• Friday, May 24, 2024
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Nigerians squeezed tightest at the dinner table as food prices remain high – SBM


Nigerians are still in for a tougher time as major food items like bread, rice, and noodles near 100 per cent rise in one year, a report by SB Morgen (SBM) Intelligence has shown.

The report, which was last updated on Friday, 26 April 2024, noted that beyond food prices surging, soap and fuel have risen over 150 per cent in one year.

Of the 60 most consumed products surveyed by SBM, a market intelligence firm, within Nigeria from the first quarter of 2023 to the end of the first quarter of 2024, food prices have risen significantly after Dudu Osun, petrol and sanitary pads.

“Aside from Dudu Osun, petrol and sanitary pads, all the other items in the top 10 are edible, reinforcing our theory that Nigerians are being squeezed tightest at the dinner table,” SBM said.

The report noted that prices of rice, noodles, and onions went up by 83.3%, 91.8% and 97.7% respectively, buoyed largely by the devaluation of the naira which has hammered consumer’s purchasing power.

It revealed that the price of bread has equally risen by 81 per cent in a year, amplified by a rise in import costs for essential commodities like wheat.

“The price of bread, a dietary staple for many, witnessed a notable uptick of 81% over the reporting period.

“This surge can be attributed to a confluence of factors, chief among them being the persistent devaluation of the naira, which erodes purchasing power and amplifies import costs for essential commodities like wheat, a key ingredient in bread production,” it said.

Nigeria is currently battling with the scourge of inflation which has seen prices of commodities rise to a record high, plunging many into the poverty threshold.

The country’s headline inflation came in at 33.2 percent in March while food inflation stood at 40 percent, the highest ever recorded in the country.

The rise in inflationary pressures has resulted in a cost of living crisis, driving hunger up and toughening daily livelihood.

SBM said monetary and fiscal policy challenges in the country’s economic landscape have seen the prices of essential commodities soar.

It added that addressing the underlying structural challenges facing Nigeria’s economy will be paramount in curbing inflationary pressures in the long term.

The market intelligence firm stated that improving infrastructure, enhancing security, and promoting diversification away from oil dependence are essential for fostering a more resilient and inclusive economy.

“Investments in human capital development, including education and healthcare, can contribute to enhancing productivity and reducing inflationary pressures by increasing the efficiency of resource allocation and fostering innovation,” the report stated.