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Spice of Life Now Costs Much More in Bali

Bad Weather Blamed for Skyrocketing Price of Chili Peppers in Bali


Bali News: Bali, Indonesia, price of chilies, Cabe Rawit, inflation
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(1/7/2017)

Officially considered an essential food commodity by the Indonesian Government, the price chilies or “cabe” in Bali has risen dramatically.

The spicy additive that is considered an essential food in many Indonesian recipes passed the Rp. 100,000 per kilogram mark on January 2, 2017.

Locally, chilies are seen as the ultimate “feel good” or "comfort food"- a fact scientifically supported given "cabe’s" ability to release calming endorphins into the system once ingested.

As a result, the price of chilies in the market place is not only a subject of popular discussion, but can also be linked to consumer confidence.
One housewife shopping at the Cokroaminoto Market in Denpasar told Radar Bali that on New Year’s Day that the cost of a "bird’s eye chili" (cabe rawit) momentarily passed the Rp. 120,000 per kilogram mark before stabilizing at the still-high position of around Rp. 100,000 per kilogram.

In more normal times, a kilogram of "Cabe Rawit" cost between Rp. 20,000 and Rp. 25,000.

Observers blame the increased price on failed chili crops linked to excessive rains and price gouging over the Christmas and New Year period by local farmers.

At local markets in Bali where chilies are normally purchased in lots of one or two kilograms, shoppers now treat the commodity with great care, purchasing only one or two hundred grams at a time.

Other kitchen spices, including garlic and tomatoes, have also increased in price over recent weeks.

Garlic that once sold at Rp. 32,000 per kilogram now costs RP. 35,000, while tomatoes have risen from Rp. 5,000 per kilogram to Rp. 6,000.

Consumers are also complaining that not only has the price of chilies increased but, in general terms, the quality of the chilies being sold is on the decline.


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