Pepper Shortage Hits Ilorin Markets Ahead of Eid-el-Kabir

Date: 2024-06-14

According to a news report from the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), pepper, a staple spice in many Nigerian dishes, has suddenly become scarce in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital, as Eid-el-Kabir approaches.

A market survey conducted on Thursday at the Mandate Market in Ilorin West Local Government Area, where pepper is usually sold in large quantities, revealed that the spice has become increasingly expensive in recent weeks.

The scarcity has also affected tomatoes, with both commodities becoming hard to find. Some pepper sellers have attributed the shortage to flooding and pest attacks in the North, where pepper is grown in large quantities.

Mallam Jamilu Isa, a vendor, explained that they were expecting deliveries of pepper and onions, but were informed that there were no goods available for loading. He lamented that the flooding had washed away many crops, and those that were not washed away were damaged by pests.

The price hike has been significant. A small container of tomatoes that previously sold for N150 now sells for N2,000. Similarly, a wastebin basket that used to cost between N1,500 and N2,000 now sells for N15,000, and a large basket that was priced at N10,000 now costs N175,000 and above.

Also, a basket of Scotch Bonnets popularly called “rodo” sold for N1,500 before, now goes for N12,000.

Similarly, a bag of onions now goes for N75,000 as against N50,000 and below that it was sold.

According to the National Bureau of Statistics, food prices in Nigeria increased 40.53 per cent in April of 2024 over the same month in the previous year and food inflation reached an all-time high of 40.53 per cent in April of 2024.

In a visit to ram dealers, they lamented low sales as buyers complained of the high prices of rams.

A ram seller, Mr Azeez Abdullahi, said the ram that went for N50,000 a few years back is sold for between N170,000 and N200,000 and above this year.

He identified the high cost of feeds and transportation as responsible for the hike in the price of the ram.

A prospective customer, Mr Yahaya Usman said with the exorbitant price, some of his friends are planning to contribute money to buy a cow and share which is also acceptable in Islam as an alternative to rams. (NAN)

 


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