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April 17, 2024

SWOFON  Speaks on Impact of Current Economic Hardship, Food Crisis on Smallholder Women Farmers in Nigeria

The National President of the Small-Scale Women Farmers Organization in Nigeria (SWOFON), Mrs. Fatima Gummi, addressed concerns about Nigeria’s low agricultural production and rising food prices, which are impacting the nation’s economy.

Speaking at an event titled “The Impact of the Current Economic Hardship, Food Crises, and Inflation on Smallholder Women Farmers in Nigeria,” she expressed concern over the country’s insecurity. She noted that this insecurity makes female smallholder farmers particularly vulnerable, hindering their ability to access their farms and causing financial setbacks.

Mrs. Gummi urged the government to declare a state of emergency on insecurity, highlighting its severe impact on smallholder farmers, especially women. She stated that the current hardship has led to lower crop yields, reduced market access, and consequently, decreased incomes for these women farmers. This situation makes it difficult for them to meet their basic needs regarding food, healthcare, and their children’s education.

She pointed out that the year-on-year inflation is particularly evident in the increased prices of essential food items like bread and cereals, potatoes, yams, tubers, oil and fats, fish, meat, fruits, coffee, tea, and cocoa.

Mrs. Gummi lamented that despite President Bola Tinubu declaring a state of emergency on food security in July 2023, the situation hasn’t improved.

She further highlighted that findings in respect to the National Bureau of Statistics data shows a significant rise in the food inflation rate, reaching 35.41% in January 2024 compared to 24.32% in January 2023. 

Additionally, she referenced the 2024 Cadre Harmonise Food Security report, which projects a grim situation with 31.5 million Nigerians potentially facing food crises between June and August, following 24.7 million already affected from March to May.

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