Toilet paper prices in Switzerland up 35 percent since start of 2022
From fuel prices to gas supplies, the war in Ukraine has had a significant knock-on effect on the global economy. Now, Swiss newspaper Watson has declared that “Putin’s energy war now extends to Swiss toilets”, after a report by Migros Magazine found that the price of toilet paper has risen dramatically since the invasion.
Production, material and personnel costs blamed for high prices
According to the international company, the price of toilet paper and kitchen roll has risen by 35 percent since the beginning of 2022. This comes alongside price increases for other standard household items like pasta (prices up 13 percent), milk and yoghurt (+5 percent) and butter (+10 percent). According to Watson, the current inflation rate means that an average household now spends 3,5 percent more on basic products and services than they did at the start of the year.
Luca Hangarter, head of toilet paper procurement at Migros, explained that the high prices for toilet paper can be blamed on three factors. First, the cost of energy in Switzerland and across Europe has risen dramatically this year, mainly due to attempts by European countries to wean themselves off Russian oil and gas, and Russia cutting off gas supplies to western Europe. “Paper is energy-intensive to produce," Hangarter explained.
Secondly, the cost of wood has risen by 50 percent over the last year. Hangarter said that Russia and Ukraine are some of the world’s top exporters of wood, and with one under sanction by Switzerland and one being invaded, supplies have been restricted significantly.
Swiss supermarkets will reduce costs when they can, Migros says
Finally, Migros blamed the price rises on a significant shortage of workers, particularly drivers and warehouse staff. Due to slower supply chains, many logistics companies have been forced to expand warehouses so that deliveries can be guaranteed, increasing running and personnel costs.
Concluding their report, Migros said: “Unfortunately, prices will not fall in the next six months… energy prices will continue to rise in autumn and winter, which will make the production of toilet paper even more expensive.” They assured readers, “As soon as the prices relax again, we will of course pass this on to customers."