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The price of cassava flakes, (one of the Nigerian staple food, popularly known as Garri), has risen significantly in some major markets in Enugu metropolis.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) correspondent, who visited some markets in Enugu on Saturday, reports that the prices of white and yellow garri had gone up by over 80 per cent.
Some garri sellers attributed the price hike and scarcity of the commodity to an off-season of the tuber and COVID- 19 pandemic during the farming season.
Miss Oluchi Akubilo, a garri seller at New Market, Enugu said the price of a 4.5-litre bucket of white garri has jumped from N350 before, to N800.
Akubilo also said that similar quantity of the yellow garri now goes for N1000 as against the previous price of N500.
Another garri dealer at Garki market, Mr Charles Ukachi, said that a bag of garri previously selling at N12,000 is now selling at between N20,000 and N22,000.
“The prices of foodstuffs like garri are always high during planting season but during the harvest period, they will become cheaper.
“Due to lack of facilities to preserve the produce after harvesting, many produce go bad, therefore, leading to prices hike,’’ Akubilo told NAN.
However, another seller at Mayor Market, who spoke on condition of anonymity, attributed the price hike to the COVID-19 pandemic, which broke out during the 2020 farming season.
She added that many people left farming activities during lockdown against the spread of the pandemic.
“Many farmers, who usually come from Ebonyi to carry out their farming activities in Enugu, could not come to the farm during the lockdown due to boundary closure.’
“This has brought about scarcity and increase in the price of many foodstuffs,’’ she said.