- A few Nigerians are of the opinion that the export of yam is going to add to the suffering of the people
- Nigeria just recently started exporting yam to different parts of the world
- This is line with the present administration to diversify the Nigerian economy
In fulfillment of the promise of President Muhammadu Buhari's administration to diversify the economy, Nigeria on Thursday, June 29, began to export yams to Europe and the United States.
In a report by The Punch, the UN Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), says Nigeria accounts for 61% of the world’s total yam output.
However with food shortages in conflict-hit parts of the country’s northeast and food inflation nudging 20%, there are fears the policy could hit consumers in the pocket.
NAIJ.com gathered that a Lagos house wife identified as Bolanle Akintomo said: “The (yam export) policy is going to compound our suffering.”
“A tuber of yam that used to sell for between 200 and 300 naira (63-95 US cents, 56-83 euro cents) is now 1,000 naira ($3.2, 2.8 euros). With exports, the price will further go up.”
Speaking on the recent development the National Association of Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Manufacturing and Agriculture also said incentives were needed to produce enough yams for local and overseas consumption.
A NACCIMA official said: “There may be an increase in prices at the short-term but the prices will fall as more yams come to the market.”
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), said the initiative could encourage farmers to increase output, earning foreign exchange for the cash-strapped economy.
NLC added that the government needed to reduce fuel costs for farmers, upgrade roads and improve storage facilities to cut waste in the supply chain and ultimately lower prices.
NAIJ.com previously reported that Audu Ogbeh, the minister of agriculture and rural development, stated that Nigeria produces more food than can be consumed by its people.
Ogbeh made his comments while flagging off the Nigeria Yam Export programme on Thursday, June 29.
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According to the minister, a huge chunk of the food gets wasted due to poor storage facilities across the country.
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