According to a report by Aljazeera we have only just begun to see the far-ranging consequences of the covid-19 pandemic around the world. Chief among those is the threat of a food crisis. But how has that impacted the price of Agro inputs in the Agricultural and Aquacultural markets in Nigeria and Africa as a whole?
What with the many factors like the knock on the prices of soybean, the cheaper productions from Brazil and the effect of the pandemic on the supply chain, the USA‘s efforts in exporting this product to the Chinese markets as part of the phase one trade deal signed in January; also looking at international players like China accelerating their purchases of this commodity, what would these things do to market prices and how will the changes trickle down to the home grown African Agro business owner?
The above is just one example, but many products have been effected by covid. I looked at the FAO website to get some more information (feel free to look at it http://www.fao.org/2019-ncov/q-and-a/en/) and there is further risk to food security.
Can anyone share their challenges if any and together we can come up with ideas of how to overcome any new pitfalls.
The biggest impediment I see is transportation. Essential goods and services are excused from the covid-19 lockdown but without specialist freight movers, it is impossible to transport processed food products across state lines; Unless of course, one is big enough to own its own means of transportation.
Naturally, when transportation is not easily available, prices hit the roofs. By as much as 25% sometimes.
Can anyone suggest how I can move bottles of sterilized tomato/pepper puree from Benin City to Abuja?
Thanks for your contribution and this is a very interesting challenge, I say so because drivers should be considered as key workers and the transportation of food products should be prioritised.
I would think that we should use farmers unions and associations who are supported by grants and statutory funds and they also work with the government to regulate policies and reduce any bottle necks.
The principle is that in times of crisis we have to come together! What I would suggest is you approach these unions and associations to get support with logistics, or to link you to truck owners or drivers. If are struggling to locate them you can also team up with other local farmers or producers to find reliable transportation and truckers in order to make arrangement and agree together to cover the costs fairly. Because as we know food is essential therefore the movement of produce is prioritised so you shouldn’t have any issues to move them.
Another thing is if you have the financial capacity release funds from your business to get a truck yourself which could be another income stream for your business (which has its own benefits for advertising your company using logos) to transport your own food products as well as local farms between your local regions and trade points. Remember during periods of market changes its the businesses who are adaptable and flexible who will survive if not thrive, so lets stay positive.
Any further suggestions would be great.
Since the inception of the lockdown, prices of foodstuffs have increased, staple foods like garri, now sells for double the price before the lockdown, paddy rice also and condiments. The complaint by these sellers is that they hardly get supplies from the producers of these foodstuffs, they sell from the old stock. I had a personal experience with a mallam that sells Irish potato, a small basket is sold for #3,000 non-negotiable, I couldn’t afford such hike.
What can be done?
The governments should make access to bulk foodstuffs easy, since most people can not leave their homes.
Special permits should be given to the farmers, transport(strictly foodstuffs) and market people so the chain of transaction is sustained.