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Challenges abound; Low-Income Families Facing Everyday Challenges

Food inflation has reached 33.98%, and prices have been steadily climbing over the past few months, with most food goods seeing price increases of 70% to 80% in the past six months, as learned by LEADERSHIP.

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The results reveal that poor and average Nigerians have had to cut back on essentials and ration food due to this increase and the low discretionary income of the populace.
A bag of imported rice, which cost N45,000 six months ago, is now selling for N73,000, according to LEADERSHIP’s study. In comparison, local rice is now selling for N63,000, up from N40,000.
Whereas a crate of eggs would have cost N2,300 six months ago, the going rate currently is between N3,000 and N3,500.

A bag of beans used to cost 100,000 Naira but is now 150,000, and a little tuber of yam that was once N1,000 is now selling for 1,500 to 2,000 Naira. Compared to July, the current price of a derica of Oloyin (sweet) beans is N900. The price of spaghetti has jumped from N500 to N800, and a carton of Indomie pasta has gone up from N4,000 to N7,400 in just six months.
The price of a paint bucket full of colored garri and white garri has been halved to N2,000 at Ipodo market in Ikeja, Lagos State, from N1,500 and N1,200, respectively. The price of 10 kg of Semovita has jumped from N8,000 six months ago to N12,000 currently.
The high prices of food and other necessities have both retailers and consumers bemoaning their inaccessibility. As an example, the price of a bottle of carbonated water has increased from N100 to N150, while the price of a bottle of sugary drink has increased from N200 to N250, and now N300.

A vendor casually dismissed the query on the demand for this product, saying, “Nigeria no get anybody’s time.” Just buy it if you like it; change your mind if you don’t.
A 5-liter bottle of Kings brand groundnut oil is now selling for N11,500, according to store owner Morenike Owolabi of the Morenike Oil store. The previous price was N8,500. A three-liter container is now N7,000 instead of N4,500. Prices have gone up across the board, with the 2-liter container going for N5,000 (up from N2,500) and the smallest size (one liter) going for N2,000 (up from N1,750). The price of even individual sachets has increased, with prices now being around twice as high as they were a year ago.

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Currently, there is no fixed pricing for rice, according to a vendor at Ipodo market in Ikeja. It is important to stay informed about price changes and to stay watchful. According to her, even Nigerian rice is experiencing price increases that put it in competition with imported rice.Palm oil costs have dropped significantly, according to the press; a 5-liter gallon cost N6,000 a year ago, but only N5,000 currently.

Responding with resiliency and resolve, Owolabi said, “We must persevere” when asked about her capacity to handle the constantly changing prices. If you can’t fight them, join them, the old adage goes. Consequently, we need to do certain lawful things so we don’t starve to death. I can’t afford to be idle because I have people that rely on me at home, including my husband and children.Despite this, unbranded groundnut oil is becoming more popular among consumers because of its low price. There will be confrontation as a result of this situation since it has gotten out of hand, in my opinion.

The regular price swings caused a carbonated beverage vendor named Iya Newthing to temporarily halt her trade, she revealed. Nevertheless, due to the unwavering demand from consumers, she decided to resume her craft. The fact that she can’t put her finger on a specific cause for the constant price increases is what makes her nervous.
Coca-Cola PET bottle packs are now selling for N2,500, up from N2,350. Coke PET bottles also cost N300 now, up from about N150 a year ago.

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A yam dealer voiced her concern about the persistent problem of increasing food prices. She wanted to know if the government is doing anything about it.
“People have adapted to the level of difficulty caused by the existing state of affairs. The price of a yam has increased from N1,000 last year to N1,500 this year.

In an interview with LEADERSHIP, the majority of merchants stated that they are not price-driven individuals but rather must offer their goods at a reasonable price. Someone said that shipping costs are eating into profits, which is why plantains are so expensive.
Selling eggs in Ifo, Ogun state, has become more expensive for Dada Atinuke due to factors such as transportation costs and the sharp increase in the price of poultry feed in recent months.
In addition, many in Nigeria are expressing extreme dissatisfaction with the recent surge in the cost of living, which they fear would drive some people to extreme measures.

The country is extremely difficult to live in, according to one Mr. John Nweke.
It is not new that what the holy book said is happening. I don’t think the government can find a long-term solution to these problems, and I feel God’s word has more power than that. Despite our suffering, we pray that God will intervene and stop the rising expense of food.
“I cannot say this is what is making the price go up,” further stated another Nigerian who preferred to remain nameless. because to the constant demand, I had to bring back PET carbonated beverages, which I had temporarily discontinued because to price increases.

Market watchers attributed the price hike to a number of factors, including inflation, instability, currency volatility, logistics of shipping and production, infrastructure failure, unstable power supply, and a poor road network, all set against a challenging commercial operating environment.
Despite the fact that some experts think the NBS reported rate is far lower than the real figure, the country’s increasing prices are reflected in the inflation rate.
Inflation was 28.92% in December, with food inflation, a key component of the basket, coming in at 33.98%, according to the NBS’s December numbers.

Inflation in food prices has been steadily rising from 24.32 percent in January of last year to 21.82% now, mirroring the trend in headline inflation. July saw headline inflation soar from 22.79 percent to 24.08 percent last year, while August had the greatest surge in food inflation, from 26.98 percent to 29.34 percent.

Inflation accelerated during the second half of the year after rising at a snail’s pace in the first half. The CBN governor seemed hopeful that inflation will decrease to approximately 21% this year, despite analysts predicting additional rising inflation due to rising food prices, insecurity, and a weaker currency. He claims that stable prices and sound monetary policy are the means to this end.
In order to maintain a stable purchasing power for its currency, central banks employ monetary policies to manage inflation and deflation.
But in its most recent staff evaluation of the nation, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) pointed out that the elimination of fuel subsidies, the depreciation of the exchange rate, and low agricultural output are key causes of the country’s soaring inflation.
In light of the continuing cost-of-living crisis, the International Monetary Fund has requested social transfers to provide short-term, targeted assistance to the most disadvantaged.
Key inflation causes are not going away, according to Dr. Muda Yusuf, chief executive of the Centre for the Promotion of Private Enterprise (CPPE).

They have only grown more intense, if anything. The elements that contribute to this situation include a decline in the value of the currency, rising transportation costs, difficulties with logistics, lack of liquidity in the forex market, a meteoric rise in the price of diesel, the effects of climate change, insecurity among rural communities, and structural barriers to production. The effects of high inflation on manufacturing costs, profitability, shareholder value, and investor confidence are multi-faceted.
If the government does not address power, logistics, and currency, he claims, it will be extremely difficult to rein in inflation.

On the other hand, producers have stressed the critical importance of addressing inflation’s root causes immediately to prevent further economic contraction and a spike in the unemployment rate.
This was mentioned in a paper titled ‘Increasing Inflation Rate and Its Impact on the Manufacturing Sector’ by Segun Ajayi-Kadir, director-general of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN).

“Higher prices of food items were the major driver of the rise in inflation,” says Ajayi-Kadir.
He pointed out that inflation in Nigeria is structural, rather than transitory, because of the persistent increase in inflation sub-indices.

Concerns about rising energy prices and broad insecurity in food-producing regions are intensifying the inflationary pressures, he said, adding that the country’s ongoing inflationary pressures are the result of government policies and measures, such as the elimination of fuel subsidies and the unification of exchange rates.

A stable exchange rate, according to MAN, is essential for controlling inflation and ensuring the country’s economy grows steadily over time. The CBN should institute policies to prevent the currency’s abrupt depreciation, which has been a source of imported inflation, according to MAN.

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