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Russia: planned economy here, market economy there

Vladivostok / RU. (it) Vladkhleb, the largest bakery in Russia´s Primorye Territory, is marking up the price of its most popular brand Podolsky by 0,80 RUB. The decision was made during a session of the company´s board of directors this week. It was a principled decision, and no date for fixing the increased price has been set. «The board discussed all the factors influencing the pricing policy in the sector, and the participants in the conference arrived at the decision that it is economically unfeasible to keep the price of a loaf of Podolsky at 16,00 RUB in the present economic conditions, even with subsidized payments for electricity and purchases of flour from the intervention fund», the company said to Itar Tass. In March, Vladkhleb hiked the price of its Podolsky brand by 25 percent, bringing it to 24,00 RUB to 25,00 RUB per loaf. It caused a public outcry (see bakenet:eu on 2008-03-22). The company in Russia´s Far East explained the price hike by growing prices of flour and fuel. In March the Primorye Territory´s government resolved the problem with twelve thousands tons of grain from intervention funds – although Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov had recommended to resolve the problem with market economy methods.

Addendum: In less than a year Belgian «Le Pain Quotidien» chain has expanded across Moscow, opening bakery cafes not only in new shopping centres, but also in more appealing locations of Russia´s capital, Moscow Times reported. The menu features mainly baked goods, and the specials of the day change regularly. There is a large selection of gourmet breads – rye (45 RUB), wheat (45 RUB), nut (85 RUB) and five-grain (85 RUB) and various other rolls and buns. A basket with a selection of the different breads costs 250 RUB. Toppings to go with bread include roast beef (120 RUB), Italian prosciutto (120 RUB), Greek olives (120 RUB) and Norwegian smoked salmon (140 RUB) among other options. There is a large variety of tartine open sandwiches, such as the hot vegetarian zucchini, eggplant and mozzarella (235 RUB) and chicken breast with tomato and mozzarella (295 RUB). For those with a sweet tooth, there is also a large range of French pastries, such as croissants (75 RUB) …

Exchange rate on June 01, 2008:
100 Russian Rubles (RUB) = 2,71536 Euro (EUR)
100 Euro (EUR) = 3’682,76 Russian Rubles (RUB)