IAS 2 Inventories contains the requirements on how to account for most types of inventory. The standard requires inventories to be measured at the lower of cost and net realisable value (NRV) and outlines acceptable methods of determining cost, including specific identification (in some cases), first-in first-out (FIFO) and weighted average cost.
The objective of IAS 2 is to prescribe the accounting treatment for inventories. It provides guidance for determining the cost of inventories and for subsequently recognising an expense, including any write-down to net realisable value. It also provides guidance on the cost formulas that are used to assign costs to inventories.
Inventories include assets held for sale in the ordinary course of business (finished goods), assets in the production process for sale in the ordinary course of business (work in process), and materials and supplies that are consumed in production (raw materials). [IAS 2.6]
However, IAS 2 excludes certain inventories from its scope: [IAS 2.2]
work in process arising under construction contracts (see IAS 11 Construction Contracts) financial instruments (see IAS 39 Financial Instruments: Recognition and Measurement) biological assets related to agricultural activity and agricultural produce at the point of harvest (see IAS 41 Agriculture).
Also, while the following are within the scope of the standard, IAS 2 does not apply to the measurement of inventories held by: [IAS 2.3]
producers of agricultural and forest products, agricultural produce after harvest, and minerals and mineral products, to the extent that they are measured at net realisable value (above or below cost) in accordance with well-established practices in those industries. When such inventories are measured at net realisable value, changes in that value are recognised in profit or loss in the period of the change commodity brokers and dealers who measure their inventories at fair value less costs to sell. When such inventories are measured at fair value less costs to sell, changes in fair value less costs to sell are recognised in profit or loss in the period of the change.
Fundamental principle of IAS 2
Inventories are required to be stated at the lower of cost and net realisable value (NRV). [IAS 2.9]
Measurement of inventories
Cost should include all: [IAS 2.10]
costs of purchase (including taxes, transport, and handling) net of trade discounts received costs of conversion (including fixed and variable manufacturing overheads) and other costs incurred in bringing the inventories to their present location and condition