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Rising food prices create strain for Ghanaians

Rising food prices create strain for Ghanaians
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By Racheal Asamoah

Ghanaians are feeling the pinch as the cost of foodstuffs continues to rise sharply, creating a significant burden for households across the nation.

A visit to some markets in Accra indicates that prices of staple items such as rice, maize, and vegetables have surged, driven by factors including currency depreciation, increased fuel prices, and transportation costs.

The surge in food prices is affecting low- and middle-income families, who spend a significant portion of their income on food.

A bucket of tomatoes, for instance, is now selling at 150 cedis.

A medium-sized tuber of yam is going for 35 cedis, with four fingers of plantain selling at 20 cedis, while three pieces of garden eggs are selling at 5 cedis.

A 25 kg bag of rice now ranges between 300 cedis and 600 cedis depending on the brand.

Some traders at the Nima market in Accra who spoke to GBC news, expressed worry about the rising cost of these essentials. While some of them blamed the situation on changes in weather patterns, others attributed it to the increase in prices of petroleum products and the subsequent rise in the cost of transporting goods from the farm gate to the market centers.

“A small rubber of tomato is 50 cedis. Previously, it was 10 cedis ,and we were even dividing them into two for 5 cedis each. But now because of the price, we cannot divide them for people to buy at a cheaper price,” Grace Larbi, a trader said.

“Daily sales have gone down drastically because customers are no longer buying our stuff as they used to because of the price hikes. There is no money.” Matilda, another trader indicated.

Some food vendors also lamented the frequent increases in the prices of food items on the market, saying they are only in business to keep their customers, as they are making no profits.

Adjeley, a kenkey seller said “I used to buy pepper a week, let me say 200 cedis a week, but now it has gone up to 400 cedis a week for Kpakpo shito.”

Habiba who sells waakye also stated that , “Now, things are very expensive, especially the tomatoes. It’s very expensive in the market. Previously, with five cedis, you can get like seven or eight pieces .Now you get five cedis for two. And now you have to buy tomatoes like 40 cedis above before you can cook,”

Despite these challenges, traders and consumers are hopeful that with the onset of the rains, coupled with measures to address the cedi depreciation, the cost of foodstuffs will reduce significantly to ease the burden on households.

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