Monday, 11th December 2023

Why bag of 50kg rice costs N47,000 in Kano

By Murtala Adewale, Kano
18 September 2023   |   3:51 am
Nigerians may be confronted with the most outrageous cost of parboiled anytime soon, as prize of 50kg bag of the commodity nears N50,000 in Kano State.

Bags of rice. Pix: Peoples Gazette

Nigerians may be confronted with the most outrageous cost of parboiled anytime soon, as prize of 50kg bag of the commodity nears N50,000 in Kano State.

A market survey conducted by The Guardian, at the weekend, indicated 50kg of parboiled rice sold for between N45,000 and N47,500 depending on the brand. The price is against N35,000 and N38,000 before the end of August 2023.

The fresh hike may further escalate the amount the stable food will go for in other parts of the country, especially places that mainly depend on Northern part of the country for supply.

The Guardian learnt that millers now source their paddy from neighbouring Chad, Cameroun, and Central Africa Republic to meet rising demand. Yet, there are concerns that the situation may worsen, as those that could not afford to source the commodity from outside the country have begun to cut down their production hours in Kano.

Prior to recent high in cost of finished rice, the scarcity of paddy in Nigeria had continued to generate concern among processors and other critical stakeholders in the rice value chain, mindful of the consequential implication of the situation to food security.

Incidentally, the inability of farmers to bridge the increasing need of the raw material signals danger to the Federal government policy to ensure that Nigeria produces sufficiently to cover her local consumption and enough to export.

A manager at Guarantee Rice Mills, Kano, Muhammad Adamu, who affirmed the impact of the reality on millers, revealed that the scarcity reduced processing in several mills to below 30 per cent. He also lamented that cost of running integrated mills on diesel is not profitable.

Aminu Abubakar, owner of Integrated Mills in Kano, revealed that majority of the processors in Kano source paddy from neighbouring countries to bridge the wide supply gap.

He also disclosed how Northern governments mop up available rice for palliative distribution, thereby cutting down supply to retailers in the market.

On what is responsible for low production of paddy, Chairman of Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria, Haruna Adamu, attributed Federal government withdrawal of intervention and high cost of fertilisers among other inputs are major predicaments.

Suspended governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, had once said the bank invested over N146 billion on rice production and processing to propel rice revolution in the country. He said the intervention gave rise to more integrated mills from 10 to 70 in Kano.

However, the acute shortage of paddy in the last four months is gradually depleting the tremendous gains recorded over the years under President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.

In this article