Prices of livestock across the counties have spiked whereas those of maize have significantly plummeted, says Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET), a body providing analysis and information on food security.
According to the November 30 report, FEWS NET notes that the wholesale price of maize weighing 90kgs in Eldoret fell from 2,500 shillings at the beginning of 2018 to 1,700 shillings in October.
Maize farmers in Kisumu also realized a drop in a 90kg bag of maize, which was retailing at 3,700 shillings in January but fell to 2,700 shillings in October.
Compared to the same period under review in 2017, the report notes that the prices of cereals registered an improvement. For instance, a 90kg bag of maize went for as high as 4,000 shillings in Mombasa last year but since September, it has dropped by 200 shillings from 2,000 shillings retailing price.
Nairobi is no better as well. In January, a bag of maize was retailing at 3,000 shillings but has since reduced to 2,000 shillings. In Lodwar and Garissa, the produce went for 5,400 shillings whereas, in Kitui, it retailed at 2,700 shillings.
The report, however, notes that the prices of livestock have substantially increased. Whereas a goat in Garissa went for 2,500 shillings in 2017, by October 2018 it had reached 3,100 shillings. The price of a goat in Isiolo and Turkana went up by 400 shillings more compared to that of Garissa.
Cattle prices have also spiked tremendously compared to the past five years. In 2017, a cow cost 13,000 shillings in Garissa by has increased to 15,000 in 2018. In Isolo, a cow goes for 27,000 shillings whereas in Turkana it is 22,000 shillings.
Livestock prices during the period under review increased by 13 to 30 percent above the five-year average across reference markets. Marsabit registered the highest increase with 73 percent above average, a spike attributed to the good conditions enjoyed by the region.
“As a result, household income and purchasing power are above average,” stated the report.
Meanwhile, FEWS NET says that food prices in urban centers countrywide remained consistent compared to last year when the stock was depleted. The report concludes that the long rains experienced facilitated good harvests and cemented supplies to households.