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Exclusives

Prices of local rice, onions, tomatoes, others crash as foreign rice continues to ease off

This report contains information on items that witnessed price increase, price decrease, as well as information on special markets and insights.

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prices of food items, SBM Jollof Index, Smuggling of imported rice hits Lagos major markets, as residence brace for shutdown

It appears Nigerians are in for good times in the new year, as the price of bags of local and foreign rice, onions, pepper, tomatoes, amongst others recorded a significant drop in price.

This is according to the latest market survey, carried out by Nairalytics Research – the research arm of Nairametrics.

The survey revealed that the price of a 50kg bag of locally produced rice dipped by 6.4% from an average of N25,375 recorded in December to an average of N23,750 while a bag of foreign rice of the same size now sells for an average of N24,500 as against an initial average of N26,125.

READ: Quality of local rice improves as food prices drop across major markets 

Also, the price of a bag of dry onions dropped by 77.5% to sell for an average of N21,500 compared to an initial average of N95,500 while the price of new onions crashed by 74.6% to sell for an average of 16,500.

This report contains information on items that witnessed price increase, price decrease, as well as information on special markets and insights.

READ: Inflation rate jumps to 12.13%, highest in 21 months

Items that witnessed price increase

  • A big bag of melon that was sold for an average of N43,500 in December now sells for an average of N45,000. This represents an increase of 3.45% in three weeks.
  • A nylon of crayfish now sells for an average of N14,250, representing an increase of 9.6% compared to an initial average of N13,000.
  • The price of a big tuber of yam spiked by 31.2% to sell for an average of N1,000 as against an initial average of N763.
  • Also, a medium-sized tuber of yam now sells for an average of N588, indicating an increase of 11.9% compared to an initial average of N525.
  • A big basket of sweet potatoes that was sold for an initial average of N5,500, witnessed an increase of 9.1% to sell for an average of N6,000.
  • The price of a small-sized basket increased by 3.6% to sell for an average of N727 from an initial average of N700.
  • Also, a big basket of Irish potatoes now sells for an average of 25,000 as against an initial average of N20,000. This represents an increase of 25% in three weeks.

READ: FG warns local rice dealers to desist from price hike

Items that witnessed price decrease

  • A big basket of round shaped tomatoes that was sold for an average of N15,000 in December, now sells for an average of N6,500. This represents a price decrease of 56.7% in three weeks.
  • Also, the price of a medium-sized basket of round shaped tomatoes reduced by 64.7% to sell for an average of N3,000 as against an initial average of N8,500.
  • A big bag of pepper now sells for an average of N7,750. This is 61.3% lower than an average of N20,000 recorded in December while a medium-sized bag currently sells for an average of N3,750 as opposed to an initial average of N10,000.
  • A 50kg bag of brown beans currently sells for an average of N30,000, representing a 27.7% decline in price compared to an initial average of N41,500.
  • The price of a 10kg bag of Mama Gold rice dipped by 8.3% to sell for an average of N4,400 compared to an initial average of N4,800.
  • Also, a 50kg bag of Royal Stallion rice that was initially sold for an average of N26,125 now sells for an average of N24,500 while Mama Gold rice of the same size sells for an average of N24,875 as against an initial average of 26,125.
  • The price of a carton of full chicken recorded a marginal decrease of 0.29% to sell for an average of N14,125 compared to an initial average of N14,167.
  • A big bag of Bush mango seeds (Ogbono) that was sold for an average of N115,000 during Christmas festivity, now sells for an average of N105,000. This represents a price decrease of 8.7%.

READ: Why onion has become the “new gold” in Nigeria

Items that maintained initial prices

  • A crate of eggs continues to sell for an average of N1,200, the same as recorded in December.
  • A big bag of yellow maize is still sold for an average of N20,167, while a bag of white maize costs an average of N20,000.
  • A bag of yellow maize sells for an average of N23,333, the same as recorded in December, while white maize of the same size still sells for an average of N23,167.
  • A 50kg bag of Honey well and Mama Gold flour sells for N13,950 and N13,850 respectively, while a bag of Dangote flour sells for an average of N13,750.
  • Horse fish (Kote) and Titus fish still sell for an average of N613 and 638 respectively across markets in Lagos.
  • A 50kg bag of garri (Ijebu) still sells for an average of N14,375, while white and yellow garri sell for an average of N10,750 and N11,125 respectively.
  • Amongst the list of food items that maintained their initial prices include: noodles, beverages, cocoa drinks, sugar, water, and juice.
  • A 12.5kg cylinder of cooking gas is filled for an average of N3,975, while a 5kg cylinder is filled for an average of N1,750.

READ: Betting on Bitcoin is better than investing in PayPal, Google, Facebook, Amazon

Special markets/items

  • Several customers were sighted at Mile-12 market negotiating and transacting with traders at different units of the market as the prices of most food items recorded a significant decline in price compared to the just-concluded year.
  • In an interview with a tomato seller at Mushin market, Mr. Bala, explained that the decline in the price of tomatoes is due to seasonal fluctuations and increased supply of the food item.
  • He stated that there has been a huge amount of harvest during this period, which has caused an increased supply of tomatoes coming from the north, and as a result driving the price of the commodity downwards. He however mentioned that oval-shaped tomatoes are not currently in the market, only round-shaped tomatoes were harvested and supplied to the market.
  • The price of foreign rice has continued to witness a significant decrease in the past four weeks, largely due to the reopening of some land borders across the country. Also, the price of locally produced rice trickled down last week due to the new influx of foreign rice.
  • According to our correspondent at Daleko market, Mrs. Oladayo, she explained that foreign-made rice is of two types for each of the brands, long and short. A 50kg of the long grain of rice sells for an average of N24,000 in the market, while the bag of short grains sells for an average of N24,000.
  • Although, a 50kg bag of Big Bull rice sells for an of N24,000 some Nigerian made rice are now selling for as low as N18,000 and N17,000. She however warned that some of these brands are quite stony. For example, Zainab rice sells for an average of N17,000 at Daleko market.

READ: No giving up, Bitcoin gains $5,000

Market insights

  • In an interactive session with an Onion seller at Mile-12 market, it was revealed that the reason for the significant nosedive in the price of onions was due to bountiful harvest towards the end of December.
  • According to Muhammed, he said this is a period for onion harvest and it is only normal for the price to decline, although it seemed like a significant decline due to the irregular hike witnessed in the price of onions last year as a result of some string of events, such as insecurity, lack of harvest, etc.
  • He further mentioned that the reduction in the price of onions is a very positive development for the year, considering the hardship experienced by many Nigerians during the past year.
  • “We are happy that the price of onions and other food items have dropped in recent times and we hope it continues this way, because the lesser the price, the more customers are likely to buy,” He added.
  • In a bid to understand the cause of the increase in the price of potatoes, Mr. Audu explained to Nairalytics that the price of potatoes increased due to the effect of seasonal fluctuations.
ItemsBrandUnitMUSHIN (7/1/2021)DALEKO (7/1/2021)OYINGBO (7/1/2021)MILE 12 (7/1/2021)Average MUSHIN (17/12/2020)DALEKO (17/12/2020)OYINGBO (17/12/2020)MILE 12 (17/12/2020)Average
Bag of RiceMama Gold10kg4400420045004500440046004800480050004800
Bag of RiceRoyal Stallion50Kg25000240002500024000245002600025500260002700026125
Bag of RiceRice Master10kg NA430043005000 NA45004750
Bag of RiceMama Gold50kg25000240002450026000248752600025500260002700026125
Bag of RiceCaprice50kg25000220002400025000240002600025500260002700026125
Bag of RiceMama's Pride50kg23000240002400024000237502550025000250002600025375
Bag of BeansOloyin50kg20000210002000020333.3333333332000021000210002000020500
Bag of BeansWhite50kg40000450004300042666.6666666674000043000450004300042750
Bag of BeansBrown50kg32000300003000028000300004300038000420004300041500
Tuber of YamAbuja1 Big Size Tuber1000900110010001000800750700800762.5
Tuber of YamAbuja1 Medium Size Tuber550600550650587.5550500550500525
Carton of NoodlesIndomie305g (Belle full)32003250330033003262.532003250330033003262.5
Carton of NoodlesIndomie200g (Hungry man)3200320032003200320032003200320032003200
Carton of NoodlesChikki100g2200220021002300220022002200210023002200
Carton of NoodlesMinimie70g19001750170018001787.519001750170018001787.5
Carton of NoodlesGolden Penny70g1700150016001600160017001500160016001600
Bag of GarriIjebu80kg14500140001450014500143751450014000145001450014375
Bag of GarriWhite50kg10500110001100010500107501050011000110001050010750
Bag of GarriYellow50kg11000110001150011000111251100011000115001100011125
Basket of PotatoSweetBig Basket6000600055005500
Basket of PotatoSweetSmall Basket700750725700700700
Basket of PotatosweetSmallest Basket400300350400250325
Basket of PotatoIrishBiggest Basket250002500025000200002000020000
Basket of PotatoIrishMedium Basket2600260025002500
Basket of PotatoIrishSmall Basket170016001650170015001600
Packet of PastaGolden Penny500g4400440043004200432544004400430042004325
Packet of PastaDangote500g4200430043004300427542004300430043004275
Packet of PastaPower (1 pc)500g250230250230240250230250230240
Packet of PastaBonita (1 pc)500g220230230220225220230230220225
Gallon of Palm OilLocal5 Litres2700260028002600267527002600280026002675
Gallon of Palm OilLocal25 Litres13000130001300013000130001300013000130001300013000
Gallon of Vegetable OilLocal5 Litres3400340035003400342534003400350034003425
Gallon of Vegetable OilLocal25 Litres16000170001700016500166251600017000170001650016625
Gallon of Vegetable OilKings5 Litres3200300030002800300032003000300028003000
Gallon of Vegetable OilWesson5 Litres4500390039004300415045003900390043004150
Gallon of Vegetable OilMamador3.8 Litres25002450250028002562.525002450250028002562.5
Gallon of Vegetable OilPower3 Litres1900180018002200192519001800180022001925
Bunch of PlaintainPlantain1 Big Bunch500600500600550500600500600550
Bag of FlourDangote50kg13600136001380014000137501360013600138001400013750
Bag of FlourHoney well50Kg14000136001400014200139501400013600140001420013950
Bag of FlourMama Gold50kg13800136001400014000138501380013600140001400013850
MilkPeak Powdered (Tin)400g12001300120012501237.512001300120012501237.5
Milkpeak Powdered(Tin)900g2800275027002750275028002750270027502750
MilkPeak milk (Refill)500g1200110012001200117512001100120012001175
MilkDano Powdered (Tin)500g1200120011001200117512001200110012001175
MilkDano Powdered(Tin)900g2600250024002500250026002500240025002500
MilkDano (Refill)500g100095010001000987.5100095010001000987.5
MilkThreeCrown (Refill)380g800750800750775800750800750775
MilkLoya Powdered (Tin)400g10001100110010501062.510001100110010501062.5
MilkLoya (Refill)400g900800850800837.5900800850800837.5
MilkCoast (Refill)500g750750750750750750750750750750
Cocoa BeveragesMilo (Tin)500g1500145015001450147515001450150014501475
Cocoa BeveragesMilo (Tin)1kg25002450240025002462.525002450240025002462.5
Cocoa BeveragesMilo Refill500g1100110010001100107511001100100011001075
Cocoa BeveragesBournvita Refill500g1300130012001300127513001300120013001275
Cocoa BeveragesBournvita (Plastic)900g2200220023002200222522002200230022002225
Cocoa BeveragesOvaltine Refill500g10009001000950962.510009001000950962.5
Cocoa BeveragesOvaltine(Plastic)500g15001500145014001462.515001500145014001462.5
CoffeeNescafe Classic50g600600600600600600600600600600
TeaLipton Yellow label52g300290300300297.5300290300300297.5
TeaTop tea52g300300300300300300300300300300
SugarSt' Louis Sugar(Cube) 500g600600600550587.5600600600550587.5
SugarGolden Penny Sugar (cube)500g400350400400387.5400350400400387.5
BreadVal-U1 loaf450450450450450450450450450450
BreadButterfield1 loaf450450400450437.5450450400450437.5
EggN/ACrate12001200125012001212.512001200125012001212.5
Bottled Water (Refill)CwayRefill600650600600612.5600650600600612.5
Juice5 Alive1 litre550550550600562.5550550550600562.5
JuiceChivita1 litre550550600550562.5550550600550562.5
GasRefilling12.5kg4000400039004000397540004000390040003975
GasRefilling5kg1700180018001700175017001800180017001750
TomatoesBig Basketround shaped650065001500015000
TomatoesMedium Basketround shaped3000300085008500
TomatoesSmall Basketround shaped2500250055005500
TomatoesBig BasketOval ShapedNA1000010000
TomatoesSmall BasketOval ShapedNA60006000
FishKote (Horse Mackerel)1 kg650600600600612.5650600600600612.5
FishTitus (Mackerel)1 kg600650650650637.5600650650650637.5
PepperBig bag8000750077502000020000
PepperMedium bag4000350037501000010000
MaizeYellow25000220002300023333.33333333325000220002300023333.333333333
MaizeWhite25000225002200023166.66666666725000225002200023166.666666667
MelonBig bag450004500045000435004350043500
OnionsBig bagDry Onions260001700021500940009700095500
OnionsBig bagNew Onions200001300016500650006500065000
Bush mango seed(Ogbono)1 big bag105000105000115000115000
Frozen foodFull chickenCarton140001450014000140001412514500140001400014166.666666667
Frozen foodChicken lapCarton135001400014000140001387514000140001400014000
Frozen foodTurkeyCarton1800018500190001850019000190001900019000
CrayfishNylon140001450014250125001350013000

About Nairametrics Food Price Survey

Nairametrics Food Price Watch is a bi-weekly Household Market Survey that covers the prices of major food items in Nigeria, with emphasis on five major markets in Lagos – Mushin market, Daleko market, Oyingbo market, Idi-Oro market, and Mile 12 market.

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Nairametrics Research team tracks, collates, maintains and manages a rich database of macro-economic and micro-economic data from Nigeria and Africa. Our analysts share some of the data collated on Nairametrics, using formats such as docs, tables and charts etc. The team also publishes research based analysis as articles on a regular basis.

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Cryptocurrency

Why buying Bitcoin in Nigeria is not cheap

It appears to have become much difficult for Africa’s most important crypto market to get Bitcoin at a fair value.

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It’s no longer news that the recent CBN reminder restricting Nigerian financial institutions from Bitcoin and other Crypto assets have started to spur negative effect in the crypto industry when considering the cost of buying the world’s most popular cryptocurrency at Africa’s largest crypto market.

A recent study by Nairametrics revealed the flagship crypto asset, Bitcoin traded as high as 46% premium on some P2P exchanges and untraditional channels when compared to the use of Nigerian bank debit cards before the Crypto ban took effect, meaning the price of a bitcoin on such platforms was much expensive than its average price on other Crypto exchanges of around $49,000 at the time.

Crypto experts are of the bias that although the Central Bank’s recent directive does not criminalize ownership of Bitcoin, the circular will however make it difficult for them to process debit, credit card, and bank transfer transactions.

READ: Bitcoin joins the trillion-dollar club with Apple, Saudi Aramco and Google

This is already increasing the complexity of a significant number of Nigerians that often use their local currencies in buying crypto assets. Many Crypto exchanges interviewed by Nairametrics spoke on the challenges many of its Nigerian users face buying Bitcoin at a fair value on the account that Nigerian leading financial payment providers such as Paystack, Flutterwave have arbitrarily cut ties with Crypto exchanges.

Adding more woes to young Nigerians adamant about buying the flagship crypto asset is the prevailing dollar scarcity in Africa’s leading economy which had often led many to buy the dollar at the black market rate of as high as N500, knowing fully well that all Crypto assets value are denominated in U.S dollar.

Adding credence to this, Rume Ophi a.k.a. Cryptopreacher, and Nigerian Crypto Educationist said;

“Nigeria’s bitcoin price isn’t consistent because it is pegged to the dollar (Usdt), which is a bit different from the parallel market, the one we call the black market or abokifx.”

READ: Nigeria’s cryptocurrency ban: A legal analysis

He added weight to the exchange rate disparity on some Crypto exchanges and other channels Nigerians have been left with

“At the time of writing, Paxful an online peer 2 peer platform pegged 1 USDT to 475. This means you need 475 naira to get 0.0000004sat (the smallest unit of bitcoin is called sat). Whereas a black market vendor is also known as OTC will sell for 480/$,” Ophi said.

The effect of the CBN crypto ban is already breeding bad actors that are currently taking advantage of the high thirst for Bitcoin as Luno a leading African-based Crypto exchange in an email sent to Nairametrics sheds more light on the cost bitcoin buyers in Nigeria must bear;

“Pushing people underground also makes it easier for scammers to exploit Nigerians, and we are already seeing Bitcoin trade at huge premiums in the country as a result of the ban.

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“Other companies have made the choice to find workarounds that are less visible for regulators – for example, Peer-2-Peer (P2P) trading. Our view is that P2P trading would go against the spirit of the CBN’s directive.

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“We believe that the focus should instead be on demonstrating to the CBN that exchanges such as Luno have the necessary controls in place to address the concerns it has in relation to cryptocurrencies.”

READ: Most powerful financial leader takes side with CBN, says Bitcoin is untrustworthy

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What you should know

  • Recall, the Central Bank of Nigeria had recently notified Deposit Money Banks, Non-Financial Institutions, other financial institutions against doing business in Crypto and other digital assets.
  • In a circular dated 5th February 2021 and distributed to regulated financial firms, the apex bank of Africa’s largest economy warned and reminded local financial institutions against having any transactions in crypto or facilitating payments for crypto exchanges.
  • Nigerian Apex bank further warned Nigerian financial stakeholders that any breach of this directive will attract serious regulatory sanctions.

READ: Why Crypto black market is thriving in Nigeria

Luno also spoke on the effect the CBN crypto ban will have on Nigerians in the long term, stating,

Any attempt to restrict access to cryptocurrency does not protect Nigerians. It holds them back and leaves them vulnerable. It prevents honest Nigerians from taking advantage of all that cryptocurrency has to offer them.”

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Bottom line: The rate of purchasing the most widely used Crypto asset in Nigeria is currently trading at a premium amid the Central Bank’s directive, suggesting it is getting much harder for Africa’s most important crypto market in getting Bitcoin at a fair value.

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Energy

Nigeria’s long road to metering: Who bears the brunt?

While consumers remain unmetered due to the inefficiencies of the Discos, the Discos continue to charge outrageous estimated bills.

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One of the many challenges facing Nigeria’s electric power sector is the issue of metering. From being a pre-privatisation problem, lack of metering has evolved to be a more sophisticated post-privatisation feature skirting the corridors of the Nigerian power sector for the last few years.

Statistics show that the number of unmetered customers across Nigeria has continued to rise. In 2016, a metering status report from the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) showed that about 3 million of the registered accounts of customers were unmetered. In 2017, this number grew as NERC reported that over 4 million unmetered customers. In 2019, a NERC report showed that over 5 million Nigerians were unmetered and this number has continued to rise.

In a bid to address the metering gap, in 2013 at the onset of the privatised electricity sector, the Credit Advance Programme for Metering Implementation (CAPMI) scheme was launched. The purpose of the scheme was to relieve the Distribution Companies (Discos) of the burden of financing the cost of the meters. As such it enabled the customer to pay for the meter upfront while the Disco amortised the cost through electricity supplied to the customer over a period of time.

READ: Nigerian firm set to raise $1.2 billion to purchase electricity meters

The CAPMI removed the initial capital outlay for financing meters from the Discos and Discos were to provide the customer with a meter within 45 days of payment. However, the scheme failed to deliver on its objective. As noted by the then Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola in 2016, “Discos that collected money from their customers to procure and install meters at their homes have mostly failed to do so”. The CAPMI was eventually discontinued in 2016, leaving the sector with at least a 50% metering gap.

In April 2018, the Meter Asset Provider (MAP) scheme was introduced by NERC in a bid to address the same problem. Under this scheme, there were to be third party meter suppliers engaged by the Discos, effectively removing the burden of providing meters from the Discos. The Discos were mandated to engage MAPs within 120 days.

READ: Consumer Complaints: DisCos received 203,116 complaints in Q2 2020 – NERC

The scheme, unlike the CAPMI, ensures that the customer received a meter from the MAP without making any upfront payment, while the payment was sculpted into the customer’s monthly electricity tariff as an energy charge until it was fully amortized. The scheme also gave customers the opportunity to choose to pay upfront and get their meters installed within 10 days in return for energy credits. It turned out that more customers were taking the alternative approach rather than the original approach as the rollout was not very favourable to those who chose to go the energy charge amortization route.

The MAP scheme has not been as successful as was hoped, with Discos missing deadlines to engage MAPs and MAPs facing the challenge of increased import tariffs and lack of local manufacturing capacity. In October last year, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) launched its National Mass Metering Programme (NMMP) with a view to funding the local production, and in some, cases importation of meters by meter providers and Discos. Perhaps this was a case of putting the cart before the horse, since the facility came after the Federal Government had revised electricity tariffs upward of a 100%, not considering the fact that a teeming number of customers who had subscribed under either the CAPMI or the MAP scheme were yet to receive meters.

READ: FG to inject over N198 billion on capital projects in power sector in 2021

With the addition of the NMMP facility to CBN’s existing N213billion Nigerian Electricity Market Stabilisation Facility (NEMSF) advanced to the Discos in 2014, significant progress is yet to be seen from this facility gathering. While it is hoped that the NMMP will help close the metering gap, the brunt of the lack of metering since the privatisation of the sector has always been borne by the consumers, many of whom have had to pay exorbitant prices for meters under previous schemes, with nothing to show for it.

Interestingly, while consumers remain unmetered due to the inefficiencies of the Discos, the Discos continue to charge estimated bills even after the February 2020 NERC Order that capped estimated billing. While the Order may have merely reduced incidences of outrageous bills, Discos continue to bill customers outrageous amounts.

READ: NNPC to boost power generation with additional 5,000 megawatts to national grid

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It is unfortunate that almost a decade after the privatisation of the Nigerian electricity sector, the Discos are unable to tackle one aspect of Aggregate Technical, Commercial and Collection (ATC&C) losses and continue to put the burden of metering or estimated billing on the customer, added to the increased electricity tariffs the customer has to pay in spite of epileptic power supply. NERC must really sit up in mandating compliance by the Discos in seeing that the NMMP combined with the MAP meet the December 2021 deadline of closing the metering gap.

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