Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Prices of staples foods have dropped by half in Nakapiripirit district following a bumper harvest for the first planting season.
The price of beans has reduced from 3000 to 1400 Shillings a kilogram. A heap of cassava that cost 2, 000 Shillings is now sold at 1000 shillings, while a kilogram of maize flour which was sold between 2000 – 2600 Shillings in March now goes for as low as 1,700 Shillings. Other foodstuffs like rice, tomatoes, cabbages and vegetables have also recorded major price reductions.
Faith Nakiru, a businesswoman says that most farmers are still harvesting and prices could drop further because farmers are selling their harvest locally. Initially, prices were hiked as most of the produce was taken to neighbouring Elgon region which this time round is also enjoying a bumper harvest.
Nakiru says because of the fall in prices, most households in Nakapiripirit can now afford more than one meal a day.
Simon Igira Apamiliangole, a social worker in Nakapiripirit says that although the fall in prices is good news to the consumers, it is a painful experience for the farmers. Igira also warns that famine may strike if the harvest is mismanaged adding that many farmers are selling all the harvested foodstuffs to raise money for local brew.
Unlike, other districts of Karamoja, Nakapiripirit experiences two planting seasons in a year. Farmers in the district mainly grow beans, maize, cassava and other crops while most districts in Karamoja majorly grow sorghum.
The other districts of Karamoja where there is only one planting season have seen just a slight reduction. In Moroto district, a kilogram of beans that cost 5,000 Shillings in March now costs between 3600-4500 Shillings.
However, onions and carrots have recorded an increase in prices. A kilogram of onions in Moroto is now 8,000 Shillings up from 5,000 Shillings while carrots are selling at 5,000 shillings up from 4,000 shillings per kilogram.