Pricepally Food News #4
Welcome to this week’s edition of our bi-weekly food news for the latest pricing, availability and happenings in the food market, locally and globally.
Tomatoes and Peppers are off-season and in high demand, causing significant price surges in different parts of Lagos. This development can be attributed to the inability of tomato suppliers (farmers) to plant or harvest because of the rainy season, which isn’t suitable for tomato farms.
A big-sized basket of tomatoes initially sold for N16,500 in May increased by 77.8% to trade for an average of N29,333. In June, Tomatoes increased by 33.3% and now sells at N40,000.
A big bag of pepper recorded a 76.7% increase in price to trade for an average of N26,500 compared to an initial average price of N15,000 in May, while the medium bag sells for an average of N18,000. On the other hand, onion prices are getting expensive with a slight increase of 25% from N200 to N250 per kg.
The increase in the price of pepper can be attributed to seasonal fluctuations. Pepper harvested in the northern part of the country is off-season. We expect prices to drop as soon as southwest farmers harvest, especially from Abeokuta.
These periodic spikes in prices are due to the lack of storage systems for these types of perishables.
Mangoes are now out of season. Nigeria produces about 850 000 metric tonnes of mangoes annually of widely varying varieties. The peak season for the tropical fruit is usually between May to June.
Ube (African pear) and Corn are now in season, with corn at N400 per kg and Ube (African pear) at N7,700 per basket.
For root crops such as Irish potatoes, a drop from N600 to N400 per KG spell that they are back in season; the trend is the same for Okro, which has gone from N800 to N320 per KG. New yams are out and should flood the markets soon, although many people prefer old yams.
As the Muslim Feast of Ileya comes closer, perishables (Tomatoes, pepper, etc.) and Proteins such as Ram, Cows and Goats will increase due to high demand for the festive season.
Nigeria is now Self-Sufficient to begin Rice Export.
Nigeria’s local rice production increased from two million tonnes in 2015 to nine million tonnes in 2021. President of Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN), Alhaji Aminu Goronyo, has revealed that Nigeria is now self-sufficient in rice with 9 million metric tons of annual rice production and almost ready for exportation. He spoke in Kaduna on Thursday, 24th June 2021, when the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and RIFAN flagged off the sales of nine million metric tons of rice paddy to millers.
The RIFAN President said that the feat was achievable only due to the courage, commitment, and patriotism of rice farmers who remained on the farm despite security challenges.
Despite massive spending over decades, Nigeria unable to produce enough Cassava
Farmers, experts and data explain why cassava, one of Nigeria’s most iconic foods, perennially remains insufficient and expensive. For all the successes and failures of Nigeria’s agricultural sector over decades, there is an ironic reality: the country has never been able to produce enough of one of its most iconic food crops, cassava, a staple for millions across the nation. And the low production has left the two most popular derivatives of the crop — garri and fufu — perpetually expensive despite massive spending by successive governments on the sector. To improve the productivity of cassava in the country, awareness must be created to help the farmers in best agricultural practices.
Nigeria to earn USD 4.5B Yearly from Mushroom Export.
Nigeria is targeting to earn USD 4.53B annually from the export of mushrooms to the international market. This was disclosed yesterday by the National President of the Mushroom Growers, Processors and Marketers Association of Nigeria, Chief Michael Awunor, at the inaugural summit held in Abuja. Awunor told the meeting that the world mushroom market as of the end of 2020 stood at about USD 45.3B, and Nigeria is determined to earn 10% of it. He said the Nigerian economy is dominated by crude oil, which accounts for 10% of the country’s GDP, 70% of government revenue and more than 83% of the country’s export earnings. Still, mushrooms offer so much hope to contribute significantly to the country’s GDP and the economic diversification drive.
Tanzania Shines in Food Export
Tanzania is Africa’s third strongest exporter of food commodities to the rest of the world. The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) ranks the country third after Guinea and Mauritania in a ratio of essential food balance to total merchandise exports index published recently. As expected, the East African nation leads the EAC region, with Burundi named the country with the most severe import dependence on food commodities. Tanzania’s food crop production reached 9.3 million tonnes in 2018/19, compared to 9.7 million tonnes in 2014/15 (-4%), with the country’s main staple crops being maize, sorghum, millet, rice, wheat, beans, cassava, potatoes, and bananas. Tanzania consumes 90% of its maize production and exports the rest mainly to Kenya (8%) as Somalia, Burundi, South Sudan, Rwanda, and Uganda share the remaining 2%.
South Sudan Partners with IFAD to Boost Productivity, Food Security and Resilience of Small-Scale Farmers
A new USD 19.9M project will bring much-needed help to 38,800 rural households facing the impacts of poverty, food insecurity and climate change in South Sudan. The South Sudan Livelihoods Resilience Project (SSLRP) will empower rural people to boost productivity, food security, nutrition, and resilience. When the COVID-19 crisis and climate change could further push the 85% of South Sudanese who live in rural areas into deeper poverty, SSLRP will target the most vulnerable, food insecure and small-scale producers engaged in fishing, cropping and livestock production. The financing agreement was signed by Gilbert F. Houngbo, President of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), and Athian Ding Athian, Minister for Finance and Planning of the Republic of South Sudan.
Dry Spell Worries Farmers in URR, Gambia
Farmers in the Upper River Region (URR) have expressed their worries about the dry spell experienced in their region and across the country for nearly two weeks since the first rains this year. The dry spell is delaying farmers’ work, particularly those who have started sowing early maturing crops on their farms. According to farmers, most have commenced planting early growing crops like millet and maize, which have already germinated. Alhagie Ballang Mballow, a farmer in Sare Mamadi in Tumanna District, said most farmers in his area who have sown their early maturing crops, especially millet, may suffer because their crops have germinated already.
And that’s all for this week’s edition.
Catch up on the previous food news here.