AFEX being one of Africa's leading commodities made this known during the unveil of its 2023 Crop Production Report in an hybrid event.
The report highlighted major factors as causes of food shortage in Nigeria, which had pushed the country to 109th out of 125 countries as indicated on Global Hunger Index, and described it as alarmingly high, indicating a severe food security crisis.
The report highlighted food insecurity and food inflation as a major challenge for Nigeria, with a 5.7 million metric ton shortage across human consumption and agro processing, and a historic high food inflation rate of 30.64%.
The report noted that as food prices continue to surge, as witnessed in the 2023 season, food security challenges will continue to persist, further reducing the continent's capacity to achieve Zero hunger by 2030.
The report highlights a critical improvement in access to farmland for cultivation in crucial areas.
According to the report, there is an increase in the usage of improved inputs, such as high-yielding seeds and fertilizers, compared to last season, which contributed to Maize and Paddy rice being forecasted to have a significantly higher production this season.
However, input lending remains a major challenge today, with agriculture making only 6.16% of bank lending in 2022.
The President/CEO of AFEX Nigeria, Akinyinka Akintunde, speaking during the launch of the report said: “This year, we nearly doubled our sample size from 20,677 to 39,091 to get an accurate reflection of the current state of Agriculture production, and we found that we must take extra care to prioritize improvement in agricultural productivity for these farmers, and this is hinged on investing in the sector, and solving for infrastructure, logistics, and technology gaps.
“This transformation will substantially enhance food self-sufficiency and increase our ability to meet the nutritional and food security needs of a growing population while also bolstering the economy through foreign exchange earnings.”
“A recurring limitation for agriculture on the continent is a shortage of reliable data, which affects the availability of transparent pricing and limits, on one hand, participation from the side of capital market operators and largely financial market players and on the other hand, farmers' ability to negotiate equitable contracts for themselves.
“This report attempts to build that gap by building a reliable data bank to promote market education and facilitate accurate trading decisions.”
However, the report forecasts higher prices for Paddy rice, Soybean, Sorghum, Cocoa, and Sesame.
On pricing, the report forecasts an increase in prices for all commodities on the basis of a general decline in production coupled with increasing demand for across processing and exports.
Paddy Rice which faced the most notable upswing in 2022/2023, partly due to increased flooding and the India rice ban that contributed to an increase of 34% and a baseline pricing of NGN353,000/mt, which is expected to rise to NGN400,000/mt and projected to stabilize at NGN480,GN500,000/mt by Q3 2023.
Meanwhile, the six key commodities (Maize, Paddy rice, Soybean, Sorghum, Cocoa, and Sesame), which leveraged on farmer surveys and measurement of transaction-level data to track vital information across crop production, price performance, and market dynamics.
The report will aid the understanding of the current food system while providing stakeholders' in the commodities market with intel to make data-driven trading decisions in the coming season.
AFEX is a platform business that enables efficient trade for commodities in Africa. Solutions start at the producer level, ensuring improvement in productivity and livelihoods while building up commodity volumes in the right quality and quantity for local and regional trade.