Yam Prices Soar by Over 200% in a Year, Reports GAWU Secretary

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Yam prices in various markets have more than doubled since the start of the year. Previously priced at 15 cedis, yams now sell for 40 to 50 cedis, depending on the location.

66271279.295Traders attribute this sharp rise to scarcity, high transport costs, and the overall cost of living. At Mallam Atta Market in the Greater Accra Region, yams range from GH20.00 to GH55.00 per tuber.

One trader, speaking anonymously, cited increased transportation expenses as a major factor and suggested that lowering these costs could help reduce yam prices.Another trader, Madam Comfort, described the price change for yams over the past few months.

She mentioned that the minimum price for a tuber of yam at her stall is now GHC25.00.Madam Comfort attributed the rise in yam prices to the depreciation of the cedi against the dollar. She explained that as the cedi weakens, the cost of imported items like fertilizers increases, leading to higher production costs. These costs are passed down from producers to traders and eventually to consumers. Our correspondent, Christopher Amoako, reported from the Northern Region, often called Ghana’s food basket, that three tubers of yam, which used to sell for GHC25.00, now cost GHC70.

A similar trend was observed in the Western Region.Mr. Edward Kareweh, the General Secretary of the Ghana Agricultural Workers Union, attributed the steep rise in yam prices, exceeding 200%, to the country’s troubled economic situation. He noted, “We’ve never seen such a dramatic increase in yam prices.

This calls for investigation and highlights the poor performance of Ghana’s economy, which is currently in a dire state.”Mr. Kareweh further elaborated that the Ghana Agricultural Workers Union has observed significant price increases across all foodstuffs, not just yams. He noted that while some seasonal price fluctuations for yams are expected, the current levels are unprecedented.

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He expressed concern that “nothing is working well,” emphasizing that unlike past economic issues confined to specific sectors, the current crisis affects agriculture, which is central to the economy. He warned that failing to resolve the challenges in the agricultural sector could mean failing to address fundamental economic problems.

 

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