Nigeria Food Prices Surge 30% in Eight States, Distressing Consumers

Food prices in 8 Nigerian states have surged by 30%, causing distress among consumers due to the removal of the petrol subsidy and naira devaluation. The cost of living has skyrocketed, with the average cost of jollof rice for a family of five rising by 314.9%.

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Nasiru Eneji Abdulrasheed
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Nigeria Food Prices Surge 30% in Eight States, Distressing Consumers

Nigeria Food Prices Surge 30% in Eight States, Distressing Consumers

Food prices in at least eight Nigerian states have skyrocketed by a minimum of 30% between December and April, causing significant distress among consumers, according to a recent report. The soaring prices have persisted nationwide despite the recent strengthening of the naira, with low-income earners struggling to afford basic sustenance.

Investigations conducted in Lagos, Ogun, Gombe, Kwara, Sokoto, Ekiti, Osun, and Niger states revealed that the prices of staple foods like beans and garri have surged by at least 30%. The price hikes have been attributed to the removal of the petrol subsidy and the devaluation of the naira, leading to intensifying inflationary pressures across the country.

Consumers have expressed their frustration, with some families now only able to eat once a day. "The price increases have affected various food items, including beans, garri, semovita, and wheat, with some items seeing price jumps of over 100%," the report stated. The government has taken some actions, such as raiding supermarkets in Abuja, but the price increases have persisted despite the naira's recent appreciation in the foreign exchange market.

Why this matters: The rising food prices in Nigeria highlight the devastating effect of inflation on food affordability and consumption in the country. The situation has been exacerbated by the recent economic reforms, such as the removal of the petrol subsidy and naira devaluation, further increasing the cost of living for many Nigerians.

According to a report by SBM Intelligence, the average cost of preparing a pot of jollof rice for a Nigerian family of five has increased by 314.9% from July 2016 to March 2024, rising from N4,087 to N16,955. The report notes that the Tinubu administration's reforms have further increased the cost of living in the country, leading many Nigerians to adopt different coping strategies, such as returning to farming or forming food-sharing groups.

Key Takeaways

  • Food prices in 8 Nigerian states have surged by at least 30% since Dec.
  • Price hikes attributed to petrol subsidy removal and naira devaluation.
  • Low-income families struggle to afford basic sustenance, some eating once daily.
  • Cost of preparing jollof rice for a family increased by 314.9% since 2016.
  • Reforms have increased cost of living, forcing Nigerians to adopt coping strategies.