Home » How Kenkey Prices Reflect Ghana’s Food Inflation Crisis

How Kenkey Prices Reflect Ghana’s Food Inflation Crisis

by Victor Adetimilehin
kenken index

Kenkey is a staple food in Ghana, made from fermented maize dough and usually eaten with fish, soup or sauce. It is a popular and affordable meal for many Ghanaians, but its price and size have been changing over the past year due to the rising food inflation in the country.

According to The Kenkey Index, a research project that tracks the pricing and weight of Ga kenkey in Accra, the average selling price of a ball of kenkey in August 2023 was GH¢4.84, up 47.7% from GH¢2.60 in August 2022. The most common price on the market was GH¢4, up from GH¢3 a year ago. The weight of kenkey (at a given price) also shrunk by 32% year on year, meaning that consumers are getting less kenkey for their money.

The Kenkey Index, which has been collecting data from over 100 kenkey sellers since August 2022, attributes the changes in kenkey prices and sizes to the high cost of maize, the main ingredient of kenkey, as well as other factors such as transportation, fuel, packaging and labour. Maize prices have increased by more than 100% in some markets due to poor harvests, climate change, pests and diseases, and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the supply chain.

The Kenkey Index’s findings are consistent with the Ghana Statistical Service’s report that the national food inflation rate was 51.9% in August 2023, the highest in more than a decade. Food inflation measures the change in the prices of food items over a period of time. It affects the purchasing power and living standards of consumers, especially the poor and vulnerable who spend a large proportion of their income on food.

The Kenkey Index also reveals that not all kenkey are created equal. The best value kenkey, in terms of weight per cedi, was found in La, where a ball of kenkey equivalent to the weight of a sachet of water cost GH¢2.86. The worst value kenkey was in East Legon, where the same weight of kenkey cost GH¢6.56. The heaviest ball of kenkey was in Ablekuma, weighing 739 grammes, while the lightest was in Osu, weighing 198 grammes.

The Kenkey Index aims to raise awareness and generate insights on the dynamics of kenkey prices and sizes, as well as the broader issues of food security, inflation and poverty in Ghana. It also hopes to stimulate public debate and policy action on how to address the challenges facing the food sector and ensure the availability and affordability of kenkey and other staple foods for all Ghanaians.

Source: Ghana Web

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