Enugu onions dealers on Saturday attributed the high cost and scarcity of onions in the market to poor harvest caused by climatic change, News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports.
A market survey conducted by NAN in Enugu revealed that price of onions increased significantly when compared to previous months as many dealers also closed their shops due non availability of the commodity.
Some traders, who spoke with NAN in Akwata market, attributed the high price and its scarcity to poor harvest season and lack of food storage facilities in the country.
Mr Okechukwu Nnamani, an onion seller, said that the onion shops were virtually empty because there were no onions in the market, adding that their suppliers from the northern part of the country could also not sell to them as they were experiencing similar situation.
Nnamani said that the biggest bag of onions now sold between N35, 000 and N38, 000 as against between N10,000 and N12, 000 respectively in February and March.
He added that if the situation persists, a bag of onions that sold for N38,000, could increase to as high as N40,000 by next week.
Another seller, Mr Okechukwu Ozor attributed its scarcity to non-availability of food storage facilities in the country.
Ozor called on all levels of government to quickly intervene by providing effective and adequate storage facilities for perishable foodstuff in Nigeria.
Mrs Rita Edogah, a retailer in the onions business at Akwata Market explained that onions were sold according to their sizes.
Edogah said that five medium sizes of onions now sold for N300, three of the big sizes go for N400, while four of the small sizes are sold for N100 as against previous months when the six big sizes went for between N100 and N150.
Another seller, Mrs Ngozi Eze, at Mayor market, said that the season of onions had passed though the price went up so high compared to other years.
“We have not experience scarcity of onion like this, even other years because by November people still buy onions at appreciable price, but this year, it is really bad,’’ she said.