Food price rises in Norway three times higher than EU average

Frazer Norwell
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Food price rises in Norway three times higher than EU average
Food prices in Norway have risen nearly three times as much as in the EU this year. Pictured is a tray of cinnamon buns in Norway. Photo by Animesh Bhargava on Unsplash

The cost of food in Norway has risen three times as much as in the EU this year. However, in the long term, price development has been more stable.


Food prices in Norway have increased by 11 percent so far this year, according to figures from the European data agency Eurostat.

The price increase across the EU has been 3.6 percent so far this year. Food has increased by 3.9 percent and 5.3 percent in Sweden and Denmark, respectively.

An explanation for food price rises being much sharper in Norway than across the EU and neighbouring countries is that supermarkets are finally raising prices after trying to keep them artificially low through price competition.

“If we look at this in the long term, we are more or less in line with other countries. The development in Norway has lagged behind, and now we are roughly in step with the price development that has been going on for a long time in Europe,” Ivar Petterson, Food researcher at Alo Analyze, told public broadcaster NRK.

Throughout 2023, Norway’s biggest chains have been locked in a series of price wars to try and entice customers through their doors. When these offers end, prices rapidly shoot up.

READ ALSO: How expensive is Norway compared to a year ago?

Norway’s Progress Party, a right-wing party currently in opposition, has called for a VAT cut on food products to try and curb food price increases. It proposes a halving of VAT on food to 7.5 percent.


“Now Vedum (Trygve Slagvold Vedum, Norway’s finance minister) and the government must wake up and see that it is necessary to do something about the food VAT, which the state earns a lot of money from. Let people keep more of their money themselves so they can afford food,” Progress Party leader Sylvi Listhaug told NRK.

Minister of Finance and leader of the agrarian Centre Party, Trygve Slagsvold Vedum, has said that the government has previously considered cutting food VAT but was concerned that the savings wouldn’t have ended up with consumers and that supermarket chains would have pocketed the profits.

“The government is open to using tax policy to reduce costs for people, but then we have to be sure that it happens. With the unrest and unpredictability that is now happening in food products, we are afraid that it is the grocery chains that would be left with the profit after a VAT cut,” he said.


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