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Price of spaghetti, cooking gas, beans, and oil jumps as traders lament forex scarcity

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Price of spaghetti, cooking gas, beans, and oil jumps as traders lament forex scarcity

The latest market survey, carried out by Research reveals the prices of staple food items such as spaghetti, cooking gas, beans, palm oil amongst others spiked in September 2021 compared to the previous month (August 2021).

According to the report, a 500g pack of Golden Penny pasta increased by 3.29% to sell for an average of N5,325 in September 2021, compared to an average of N5,150 recorded in August 2021. Similarly, the cost of filling a 12.5kg cylinder of cooking gas, surged by 26.6% to sell for an average of N6,270 compared to an initial average of N4,600.

READ: Prices of tomatoes, onions, pepper, others spikes across markets in Lagos

The sudden spike in the prices of the items has been attributed to a couple of infrastructural factors, scarcity of forex, as well seasonal fluctuations affecting agricultural food produce. Some traders attributed the increase in the price of cooking gas, palm oil and groundnut oil to the scarcity of forex, which is affecting the cost of importation.

A cursory look at the inflation figures from the National Bureau of Statistics shows that Nigeria’s food index surged by 21.03% year-on-year in July 2021, while it recorded a 0.86% increase when compared to the previous month. This report contains information on items that witnessed price increase, price decrease, as well as information on special markets and market insights.

READ: Global food prices declined in July but not in Nigeria

Items that witnessed price increase

A 50kg bag of Oloyin beans as of 7th September 2021 sells for an average of N41,500 representing an increase of 12.45% compared to N36,333 recorded in August.

A big bag of white beans increased by 6.61% to sell for an average of N85,667, while brown beans which sell for an average of N87,500 increased by 7.43% month-on-month.

Similarly, A carton of Golden Penny pasta that was sold for an average of N5,150 in the previous month now sells for an average of 5,325. This represents a price increase of 3.29% month-on-month.

A 500g pack of Power spaghetti increased in price by 8.77% to sell for an average of N285 as against an initial average of N280 as of August 2021.

The price of a 5 litres gallon of palm oil increased by 11.67% to sell for an average of N4,000 while the 25 litres gallon increased by 4.1% to sell for an average of N21,500.

In the same vein, locally produced groundnut oil also recorded significant increase in price in the period under review as a 25 litres gallon of vegetable oil surged by 11.21% in September to sell for an average of N26,750.

The price of a carton of chicken lap increased by 1.43% to sell for an average of N17,500. Also, a carton of full chicken, which sold for an initial average of N16,000 now sells for N17,750, representing a price increase of 9.86%.

The price of Horse Mackerel fish (Kote) increased by 10% to sell for an average of N750, while Titus fish sells for an average of N700 in Lagos Markets.

The price of maize continues to increase, as a big of yellow maize recorded a 14.29% increase in price to sell for an average of N28,000.

Items that witnessed price decrease

The price of a 10kg bag of Mama Gold rice recorded an 8.37% decrease to sell for an average of N5,075 compared to an initial average of N5,500.

A big bag of Ijebu garri recorded a marginal decrease in price to sell for an average of N21,125. Yellow garri currently sells for an average of N16,250 while white garri sells for an average of N17,667.

A big basket of Sweet Potatoes also dropped in price to sell for an average of N9,500 compared to N10,000 recorded in the previous month.

Similarly, a big basket of Irish potatoes currently sells for an average of N16,000, representing a 9.38% decrease in price compared to an initial average of N17,500.

The price of a crate of egg, which had endured significant rise in price since the beginning of the year, also dropped by 8.62% to sell for an average of N1,450.

Special items/Insights

Cooking gas

The cost of filling gas in Nigeria has surged significantly recently as further confirmed by the latest gas report by the NBS, which revealed that the price of a 12.5kg cylinder of cooking gas increased by 3.11% month-on-month and 7.16% year-on-year in July 2021.

In the same vein, a 12.5kg cylinder increased by 26.6% in Lagos State in September 2021. Traders have lamented the recent increase in the highly demanded household commodity and attributed the increase to the reported implementation of the cooking gas imports tax. This according to interviewed traders has contributed immensely to the significant increase in the price of household cooking gas.

A brief visit to Sango Market in Ogun State, also showed a similar trend in the price of cooking gas as dealers started filling a unit kg of gas within the range of N500 and N600, depending on the store. This is a significant hike compared to the initial average of N300 and N350 it was sold for, in the area.

Melon

The price of melon in the month of September surged by 33.95% to sell for an average of N81,000 and sellers attributed the increase to increased rainfall across the country. the recent downpour of heavy rain across the country has made it difficult to dry the melon so as to ensure supply.

In the words of Kelechi, a trader at Mile 12 market, “There is no much sun to dry melon after being harvest, which has caused a decline in the supply of the food item in the market. And as you know, when there is scarcity of any item, the price tends to Jack up.”

Similarly, Mrs. Adebayo from Mushin Market stated that, “The price of melon has increased significantly due to the constant heavy rainfall in the north as it is destroying the farmers’ crops, therefore, preventing them from drying.”

Palm/Groundnut oil

The price of groundnut oil and palm oil recorded notable price increases in September compared to the previous month. Traders surprisingly have attributed the increase to lack of sufficient forex and the constant depreciation of the Naira in the parallel market.

According to Mr. Ebihen at Mile 12 market, “Firstly the issue of dollar has caused huge increase in the prices of most items in the country, these have also come back to affect the likes of palm oil and groundnut oil.”

He stated further, “Secondly, most of the oil we consume in Nigeria are being imported from neighbouring countries and the unstable nature of our local currency continues to affect the cost and sales price of the food items.”

Tomatoes/Onions.

The varieties include the Yoruba Tomatoes, imported ones from Ghana and Kano tomatoes, as explained by Mr Kabiru, a trader in the market.

According to Mr Kabiru, a big basket of round-shaped Ghana tomatoes is sold for an average of N19,000, which is a smaller basket compared to the Yoruba basket and the Kano basket. A big basket of oval-shaped Kano tomatoes sells within the range of N12,000 and N15,000 while the local round-shaped tomatoes sell for an average of N26,000.

Meanwhile, Mr Lastborn an onion seller at the Mile 12 market explained that dry onions are becoming scarce in the market due to seasonal fluctuations, which has affected the price of the commodity. However, a big bag of dry onions sells for an average of N30,000 at the Mile 12 market, while the new onions sell for an average of N20,000.

What NBS data is saying

According to the selected food price report by the foremost national statistical body of Nigeria (NBS), fresh mudfish recorded the highest month-on-month increase with a 66.89% increase in price to sell at an average of N1,815.27.

Tomotoes followed as the second food item with the highest price increases in the month of July 2021. Tomato is currently sold for any average N414.83 per unit measurement, frozen titus fish increased by 15.32% in July 2021 compared to the previous month, while a year-on-year analysis indicates a 30% price increase for tomatoes

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