A market survey data obtained by the Ghana News Agency (GNA) from the Regional Directorate of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA) indicated that prices of food items such as maize, soyabean, cowpeas, and tomatoes had increased.
For instance a 100kg bag of maize which was sold at GH¢40.00 in 2011 now sells at GH¢62.00.
Other food items that have also been affected by recent price increases are millet which sold at GH¢60.00 for 96 kg bag and now cost GH¢91.00; local rice which sold at GH¢64.00 per 100kg bag last year, but now goes for GH¢111.00, and yam which has shot from GH¢120.00 per 250kg to GH¢135.00.
The price of a 52 kg crate of tomatoes increased from GH¢90.00 to GH¢132.00, a 109kg bag of cowpeas went up from GH¢120.00 to GH¢160.00, while a 73kg of onions dropped from GH¢180.00 to GH¢105.00.
Speaking in an interview with the GNA, Mr Festus Aaron Langkuu, a Monitoring and Evaluation Officer at MOFA said while prices of some commodities increased, the price of other food items remained unchanged.
Asked why the increases, Mr Langkuu explained that the production of some commodities such as rice and maize was low due to low rainfall experienced in the region for some time now.
He said another reason could be that people were hoarding the commodities in order to sell it at a higher price later at the peak of the lean season.
He suggested that the government should invest in building more dams for irrigation purposes to enable farmers to crop all year round to avoid the over reliance on rain-fed agriculture.