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China's farm produce prices continue to drop


08:06, March 05, 2013

BEIJING, March 4 (Xinhua) -- Farm produce prices in 36 major cities dropped for a second week due to abundant supplies, an official statement said Monday.

The Ministry of Commerce (MOC) said in a statement on its website that average wholesale prices for 18 monitored vegetables plunged 8.1 percent last week from a week earlier, marking the second weekly drop in a row.

The ministry attributed the decline to relatively fast vegetable growth caused by warming weather, which has served to push up supplies.

Wholesale prices for eight types of aquatic produce dipped 0.7 percent from the previous week, the MOC said.

The wholesale price of pork, a staple meat in China, dropped 1.7 percent, while that for beef and mutton rose slightly by 0.4 percent and 0.3 percent, respectively.

Food prices account for about one-third of the prices used to calculate the consumer price index (CPI), a main gauge of inflation.

The country's CPI grew 2 percent year on year in January, down from a seven-month high of 2.5 percent in December, data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed.

The NBS will release the CPI figures for February on Saturday. Many analysts have forecast that the figure may exceed 3 percent, as the week-long Spring Festival holiday pushed up demand.

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