On Tuesday, Israel’s Competition Authority raided the offices of several food companies
The Knesset’s Economic Affairs Committee on Wednesday held debates on soaring prices in Israel and competition in the food industry, to which grocery retailers were invited.
During the committee panel, parties disputed who was responsible for Israel’s skyrocketing food prices, with food retailers alleging that the high costs are a result of the state, according to The Jerusalem Post.
These discussions come the day after a search by the competition authority in the offices of several supermarkets suspected of coordinating their prices.
Several large supermarket chains have been in the sights of police and government since the discovery of a discounted online shopping website owned by grocery company Shufersal.
Shufersal was selling its products ten to 20 percent cheaper to ultra-Orthodox customers on the site, a discovery which sparked outrage among consumers.
The chain’s offices, along with those of food businesses like Strauss Group, Victory, and Diplomat Holdings, were raided on Tuesday by administrators from Israel’s Competition Authority.
The agency alleged the companies were in violation of fair market competition laws, and an investigation into the businesses is ongoing.
In Israel, food prices are 36 percent above the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) average, while in the European Union, these prices are 9 percent below the OECD average.