Traders in the Bolgatanga Central market in the Upper East Region have expressed worry following price hike in foodstuffs during the harvest season of September – October 2020.
According to the traders, complaints from farmers indicates poor harvest due to the negative impact of coronavirus and the recent floods that destroyed many farms in the Upper East and North East Regions.
The market women said the low supply has created competition among the traders due to the small availability of foodstuffs.
During a survey conducted by the Ghana News Agency to ascertain prices of foodstuffs during the current harvest season, the traders expressed fear that the prices would continue to increase further in November and beyond.
A groundnuts seller, Patience Atiawine, said the price of the standard bowl or ‘alonka’ of groundnuts had increased from GH¢12.00 between July and August to GH¢15.00 in October this year.
She noted that the coronavirus and the lockdown had impacted on their businesses and indicated that although some of the restrictions had been lifted they were still experiencing low patronage.
She made a plea to the district assembly to support them with loans to sustain them in their businesses.
Another woman who sells various foodstuffs including groundnut, millet, and maize, Elizabeth Balayon, said a bowl of millet which was GH¢6.00 between July and August had increased to GH¢10.00 between September and October.
According to her, maize, which was sold at GH¢3.50 is currently sold at GH¢5.00.
The story was not different from that of a yam seller, Zeyaba Azeba, she said three tubers of yam which was sold at GH¢15.00 had increased to GH¢20.00.
Speaking of fresh tomatoes, a seller, Doris Adongo, said the vegetable was cheaper as the price had reduced from GH¢5.00 for four pieces to GH¢2.00.
She however complained that due to the low prices, the tomatoes are getting rotten as customers do not buy much.
Another tomato seller, Francisca Abota, said a basin of tomatoes which used to be sold GH¢105.00 accumulated a profit of over 100 per cent in July but presently sold at GH¢80.00 per basin in the market.
She said the current source of tomatoes in the market was Tongo and Bongo in the Region, but the vegetable is brought from Techiman in the Bono East Region, earlier, in June and July.
Ms Abota called on the District Assembly to construct more dams for farmers, not only for dry season farming but also to be used in the rainy season when there were dry spells.
She also appealed to the Assembly to provide those of them who engage in farming to supplement their income, with credit facilities.