Fear of food crisis reverberates across Africa

Mallam Haruna, my #farmer friend from Benue State, whom I rely on to get some of the best yams from that region can no longer sell to me at the old price, apparently, the prices of Yams have doubled from NGN65,000 for a bundle of 100 medium-sized tubers to NGN130,000. Efforts to negotiate proved abortive.

In his words, he said; Madam transport too high, road no good, water no dey ( shortage of water ) and #Yam don go ( Meaning out of season as certain cash crops in #Africa are seasonal )

The continuous rise in the cost of staple foods and consumables completely priced out of the reach of the majority of Nigerians validates the looming #foodscarcity and #insecurity that would be faced on a global scale in the next coming years.

The general food index did not just rise but has doubled.

The composite food index increased by 15.03% in March 2021 0.03 points higher, compared to 14.98% recorded in January 2021 the rise in the food index was caused by increases in prices of #potatoes , yam and other tubers, #fish , #oils and #fats , #meat , #fruits , #bread and #cereals , and #vegetables .

The key drivers of #foodinflation include the security challenges faced by many farming communities across the country, adding that #transportation cost, the climate change effect, productivity issues in #agriculture and the paucity of #commercialagriculture in the country and cost of #farminputs attributed to food inflation.

It may be recalled that just a few months ago, FAO predicted that seven million Nigerians will experience / food shortage/, 16 northern states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) have been identified to face food and nutrition crisis.

The solution is to empower farmers to produce more using recent and available technology; for now, food production depends on nature, that is, rainfall and increased acreage. The key is production, production and production.” Farmers should be informed to tap the various intervention funds of the Central Bank of Nigeria . if farmers have access to the various intervention funds especially those under Covid-19, the problem would be minimised.”

It is imperative to scale up productivity in agriculture, address the climate change issues and improve the security situation to improve agricultural output and reduce the risk of food crisis in the country.

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