BIG NEWS for Brazilians buying into the Main Basket!

Brazilians got great news this week. According to the data of the Inter-Union Department of Statistics and Socio-Economic Research (Dieese), in February 2023, in 13 out of 17 capital cities surveyed, the basic food basket was cheaper.

This means that most consumers who visited supermarkets in the country last month were able to take advantage of slightly lower prices. See below the change in the cost of a basic food basket in each of the capital cities surveyed by Dieese in February:

  • Bethlehem: 1.25%
  • Christmas: 0.64%
  • Savior: 0.34%
  • João Pessoa: 0.01%
  • Recife: -0.19%
  • Aracaju: -0.42%
  • Strength: -1.25%
  • Brazil: -1.37%
  • Sao Paulo: -1.42%
  • Florianopolis: -1.80%
  • Porto Alegre: -2.12%
  • Goiania: -2.17%
  • Curitiba: -2.34%
  • Win: -2.34%
  • Campo Grande. -3.12%
  • Rio de Janeiro: -3.15%
  • Belo Horizonte: -3.97%

As seen above, only four advances were from the north and northeast. By the way, in January, the price of the basic food basket was increased by the northeastern capitals, which topped the table in all the surveyed places.

However, at the bottom of the table, with the largest declines in the country, appeared the capitals of the Southeast and Midwest regions. This result was different from that recorded in January, when the three capitals of the southern region had the largest declines in the country.

The most expensive food basket in the world

After adding February’s fluctuations, São Paulo’s basic food basket remained the most expensive in the country. In summary, residents of the capital city of São Paulo had to spend 779.38 rials to buy a basic food basket in the region last month.

This amount corresponded to 59.9% of the minimum wage in the country (1302 roubles). In other words, workers in the country who received the national minimum wage in February and who lived in São Paulo spent more than half of their income on buying a basic food basket.

This scenario ends up forcing many to cut back on other expenses to what little is left of their paychecks. And, at this time, many important things and services take place, such as electricity and water bills, rent, house payments, store receipts, etc.

Ideal minimum wage surprises

Dieese not only revealed the price fluctuations of the main basket in February 2023. The organization also estimated what the ideal minimum wage would be in Brazil. For that, he took into account the cost of the country’s most expensive main basket last month, which was in Sao Paulo.

In that case, In February, the national wage level should have been R$6,547.58, an amount exceeding 5.03 times the minimum wage in force at that time. The minimum amount requested in February 2022 was BRL 6,012.18, which is 4.96 times the current minimum amount (BRL 1,212).

The study also found that the average time it took a worker in São Paulo to buy items from a basic food basket was 131 hours and 41 minutes in February.

Although the national average was also quite high last month, it was not at the same level as in São Paulo. According to Dieese, the working time in the country to get a basic food basket in February is 114 hours and 38 minutes.

In summary, the basic basket value refers to the set staple food, which are necessary for one month’s food for an adult. Dieese’s calculation considers a family consisting of two adults and two children.

It’s also worth noting that Dieese took into account social security discounts of 7.5%. With that, it was possible to reach a value that is very close to what is needed to have a decent life in the country.

Find out which capital had the cheapest base basket

The survey was based on São Paulo’s basic food basket, the most expensive in the country, to determine the ideal minimum wage. However, Diez also identified values ​​in the other capitals surveyed. And there were places whose values ​​were much lower than Sao Paulo.

Check the price of the main basket in February in all the surveyed locations.

  • Sao Paulo: BRL 779.38
  • Florianopolis: BRL 746.95
  • Rio Janeiro: BRL 745.96
  • Porto Alegre: BRL 741.30
  • Campo Grande: BRL 719.94
  • Brazil: BRL 719.74
  • Vitoria: BRL 709.21
  • Goiania: BRL 695.18
  • Belo Horizonte: BRL 679.86
  • Curitiba: BRL 678.90
  • Fortaleza: BRL 671.32
  • Belem: BRL 662.98
  • Christmas: BRL 626.15
  • Recife: BRL 606.93
  • João Pessoa: BRL 600.10
  • El Salvador: BRL 596.88
  • Aracaju: BRL 552.97

In the case of Aracaju, which had the cheapest basic food basket in the country in February 2023, as in recent months, the cost of basic food items will be 42.5% of the minimum wage, which is much lower than in São Paulo. By the way, that was not the only difference between these places.

In short, those living in Aracaju had to work 93 hours and 26 minutes in February to buy a basic food basket. In particular, in São Paulo, a person would have to work almost 40 hours more to buy that same basic food basket.

Finally, if Aracaju’s basic food basket were the most expensive in the country, which is what Diez used to determine the ideal minimum wage, the amount needed by Brazilians would be R$4,645.51, which is 29% below the ideal minimum wage when San was: Paulo’s basket was considered.

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