The trend in the hike of food prices in Nigeria, has made a lot of consumers settle for smaller brands
The present pattern demonstrates that as the purchasing power of Nigerians is diminishing, a beam of light is that in spite of the fact that the costs of items they look to buy are ceaselessly on the increase, the rate of increment has backed off. According to SBM Jollof Index a survey carried out by SBM Intelligence, there was a steady increase in the price of food commodities from July 2016 to September 2017 which is exactly the duration of time the country was in a recession. The cities surveyed were Abuja, Awka, Calabar, Ibadan, Kano, Lagos and Onitsha, the data collected shows the trend of inflation since 2016. The SBM Jollof index tracks the prices of the main ingredients used to prepare a pot of one of Nigeria’s primary delicacies – Jollof rice. This meal was chosen because it is a delicacy in every part of the country. While the price is slowly reducing, it still costs Nigerians more today than it did in 2016 to cook a pot of Jollof, from the survey; it cost a total sum of N5566 to make a pot of Jollof, but as at July 2016, N4048 even as the country is now out of recession. With the increase in the cost of food, SBM Intelligence carried out another survey that showed the effect the recession had on the cost of feeding in Nigeria, some respondents admitted to have been forced to change their financial habits; instead of buying in bulk, they now buy as they need as opposed to bulk buying that was applicable before the recession and also buying a more affordable brand to cut cost, while others have started looking for extra source of income due to the inflationary trends, although there are respondents who said that the change haven’t affected them in any way. The current trend shows that the purchasing power of the Naira has decreasing. Despite the country mentioning agriculture as one of the sectors whose improved performance helped in the country’s economic recovery, there was still a significant increase in the price of food commodities in Nigeria in the cause of the recession; this might be due to the fact that Nigerians are loyal to specific brands for a plethora of reasons which includes availability and good quality which makes it difficult for locally made brand to make it into the Nigerian market. It is evident from the report that the recession had a huge effect on food prices and the wellbeing of the citizens across the income strata of the country. Nigeria ought to be self-sufficient in food production and with an exceptional growth of agriculture GDP in 2016 by 4.03% when the country was in recession. If the focus is on agriculture, there is every likelihood that there would be a subsequent increase in the quality of locally made products and they will be readily available which might lead to self-sufficiency in food production, food security which is essential for economic development and a significant decrease In the cost of feeding in the nearest future.