In May 2021, the prices of major food items across the world rose to their highest level in 10 years — and Nigeria is no different. A visit by TheCable to some markets in Lagos and Ogun states have shown a greater increase in food prices in the last six months.
The increase has further reduced the purchasing power of most consumers who are already cash-strapped due to the stuttering economy, high unemployment rate amid ballooning inflation.
In its latest monthly price index, the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) said the world food price index increased in May — highest level since 2011.
In the monthly index, cereal prices rose six percent in May month-on-month and 36.6 percent year-on-year. Maize prices led the surge and are now 89.9 percent above what they were earlier in the year. It also noted a jump in vegetable oil index by 7.8 percent in May — lifted by rising palm oil, soya.
A BAG OF GARRI UP 54 PERCENT , ONION INCREASED BY 46 PERCENT
At Ile-Epo market and Ota market (Oja-Ota) both in Lagos and Ogun states respectively, TheCable noted sharp increase in prices of onions, garri, vegetable (groundnut) oil, beans, and rice.
The price of a bag of onion at the markets increased by 46.67 percent from N15,000 to N22,000; a medium-sized bag of onions jumped high by 100 percent from N4000 to N8000; a basket of onions now costs N4000 from N2000, while a bucket (small rubber) costs N2000 from N1000.
Last month, the Onion Producers and Marketers Association of Nigeria (OPMAN) had announced plan to stop the supply of onions to south-south and south-west states. This followed the suspension of the supply of the item to the southeast over alleged attacks on members’ trucks by gunmen in Imo state.
Mohammed Aliyu, a trader at Ile-Epo market, told TheCable that the increase in the price of onion is due to supply shortage.
However, Yakubu Musa, another onion seller at Oja-Ota, said, “the price increased because it’s seasonal”.
The price of bread has also gone up to N350 from N250 in major supermarkets visited by TheCable.