EU meat prices comparison: How does the Czech Republic stack up in BBQ costs?

Meat, fish, and alcohol are below the EU average prices, but steadily catching up

Raymond Johnston

Written by Raymond Johnston Published on 25.08.2020 15:05:00 (updated on 25.08.2020) Reading time: 2 minutes

Having a barbecue in the Czech Republic is significantly cheaper than in other European Union countries. A comparison made by Eurostat, the EU statistical arm, showed the price of meat, fish, and alcohol were all under the EU average in 2019. The figures, though, don’t address quality.

The price of meat in the Czech Republic was 77.0% of the EU average in 2019, but that number has been rising, It was 73.5% in 2017 and 75.9% in 2018.

While people often travel to Austria or Germany to shop for goods, this wouldn’t provide any savings money-wise when it comes to meat. Austria was the most expensive in the EU, at 145.1% of the average for the EU-27, while Germany was at 106.4. Neighboring Poland, though, was cheapest at 63.3%. Nearby Hungary, known for its spicy sausages, was at 75.3%.

Cuts of meat from a butcher via iStock / Whitestorm
Cuts of meat from a butcher via iStock / Whitestorm

Fish prices in the landlocked Czech Republic were closer to the EU average, at 91.3% in both 2018 and 2019, up from 90.5% in 2017. Alcohol domestically was at 87.2% of the average in 2019, up from 83.3% in 2017 and 86.1% in 2018. The average price for beer was not listed separately.

In general, meat prices in the Czech Republic in 2019 were 83.3% of the EU average.

“If you are planning to buy some meat for a barbecue in the last few weeks of summer, you might be interested in knowing how the price of meat in your country compares with other Member States of the EU,” Eurostat said, providing a graph.

eu meat prices
EU meat prices / via Eurostat

“When price levels in countries are compared with the EU average price level index of 100, the results show that in 2019, the price of meat was highest in Austria (price level index of 145) and Luxembourg (141), followed by France (131), the Netherlands (127), Belgium (125) and Finland (124),” Eurostat added.

“In contrast, the lowest price levels for meat in 2019 were in Poland and Romania (both with a price level index of 63), followed by Bulgaria (66) and Lithuania (71),” Eurostat concluded.

Meat covered in these statistics include beef and veal, pork, lamb, mutton and goat, poultry, other meats and edible offal, and other meat preparations. The United Kingdom was included in the averages for 2019 or previous years.

grill vystaviste
New grill in Výstaviště / via Facebook, Pavel Vyhnánek

Quality, though is harder to quantify. Critics have complained that international chain stores use Central and Eastern Europe as a dumping ground for inferior goods including meat and other food products. The European Union has been trying to address the issue, but has made little progress.

People in Prague should be aware that most public parks do not allow grilling, though there are exceptions. A new area recently opened up in Prague’s Výstaviště Holešovice with electric grills for the public to use.

There are also designated areas in Obora Hvězda, Hostivař. Divoká Šárka, Hloubětín park Smetanka, Prokopské údolí, Ďáblický háj, Chodovská tvrz, Kunratický les, and Velká Chuchle, among some other locales.

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