Lagos State residents are expressing growing concern over the continuous surge in the price of beans, a staple food and major source of protein in the region.

The consistent increase in price has made beans unaffordable for many, sparking worries about malnutrition and calls for government intervention.

The price of beans has skyrocketed in recent months, with a 40kg bag now selling for N115,000, up from N26,000 in January. Similarly, a 100kg bag has risen from N55,000 to N230,000, making it difficult for residents to access this essential food item.

For many Lagosians, beans are a crucial part of their diet, providing a affordable source of protein. However, the rapid price increase has forced families to reduce their consumption or seek alternative protein sources.

Residents are urging the government to take action to address the situation, as the price hike is having a significant impact on their livelihoods.

Mrs. Uloma Chigozirim, a housewife and mother of four, expressed her concerns about the situation.

Beans used to be the cheapest food, but now we don’t even understand what’s going on. Every other week, the price keeps going up, and even traders can’t tell us the reason for the hike. Beans used to be the cheapest source of protein for the average resident, but now it’s too expensive to afford. We really need government intervention, or else many of us will be malnourished,” she told NAN.

Beans farmers attribute the price increase to the seasonal nature of the crop and the impact of cattle grazing on bean farms.

Mr. Uche Ikenga, a beans farmer in Abuja, explained that beans are not an all-season crop and that the peak harvest period is usually at the end of the year.

However, last year’s harvest was affected by cattle grazing, resulting in a low yield and scarcity of beans this year.

The scarcity of beans has led to a significant increase in price, making it difficult for traders to stock the produce.

Mr. Ahmed Yusuf, a beans trader at the Dry Foodstuff Section of Ile-Epo Market, Agege, stated that demand for beans is high, but farmers do not have enough supply.

He said: “We sold a small bucket of beans for N6,500 last two weeks, but now the same quantity sells for N8,000. The price keeps soaring every day, and we sell as we buy. We no longer keep it because of the price unpredictability.”

Mrs. Bunmi Arowolo, a seller of jewelry, appealed to the federal and Lagos State governments to tackle insecurity and empower farmers to cultivate crops.

She said: “Early in May, I bought a paint (small) bucket of beans for N7,500 as against N3,000 previously. As a common form of protein, I now manage a small quantity for my family. I want to appeal to the governments to tackle insecurity so that farmers can go to their farms again and make the produce available and affordable.”

According to Ms. Adaeze Oparaku, a nutritionist at the Lagos Teaching Hospital, beans are an essential source of protein, carbohydrates, dietary fiber, and micronutrients like Vitamin B, phosphorus, copper, manganese, and iron.

Oparaku said: “Beans should be a regular staple in children’s diet if they like it. However, given the rise in price, it can be substituted with other protein sources in children’s meals.”

Traders and residents are urging the government to address the food inflation and ensure affordable protein sources.

Mrs. Eugenia Uloma, a trader at the popular Kotangora Market in the Abule-Egba area, emphasized the importance of beans in the Nigerian diet.

She said: “Beans have been a major part of our diet and are important to every Nigerian. The produce is so expensive, but we still buy the quantity we can afford because it is our major source of protein. Other protein sources are even more expensive. We don’t need so much from the government; if it can address this growing food inflation, we will be grateful.”

In addition, residents are calling for adequate planning for increased local production of beans. Mrs. Barinedum Legbara, a vegetable farmer, stressed the need for strategic cultivation of beans to avoid scarcity and high prices.

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