The ban on frozen turkey and chicken has sent the prices of the items up by more than 35 percent in Lagos major markets, according to the News Agency of Nigeria.

A survey at Mile 12 and Ijora markets shows that a carton of turkey now sells for N11,000 from N7,500, while chicken goes for N9,500 from N6,500. At Dopemu and Agege main markets, a kilo of turkey goes for N1,150 from N750, while chicken sells for N1,050 from N650.

A visit to cold stores in Ayangburen, Sabo, Obale and Ejino markets in Ikorodu shows that only few of them had the items. At the Iyana Ipaja area of the state, only one cold store had the products in stock and it was sold at N1,100 per kilo.

The Federal Government banned the importation of frozen chicken, turkey in 2003, but since then the items have never seized to exist in Nigerian markets.

On July 7, the Nigeria Customs Service flagged off a fresh enforcement of the ban. The new measures seem to have a bite following the soaring price of the items barely nine days after the fresh campaign by the customs.

Afusat Popoola, Iyaloja of Ajeromi Ifelodun Local Government, confirmed that the shortfall in supply was responsible for the price increase, saying “although, it is still available at Ijora market, being the hub of frozen food items, but the availability is in limited quantity and price has increased.

“The present situation will not only affect turkey and chicken but frozen fish will also be affected. There is, however, a lot of frozen fresh fish in stock.’’

Akinbiyi Adeyele, an economist, urged the Federal Government to cushion the effects of the impact by providing incentive and investing more in livestock agriculture, saying “we all agree that smuggling is bad for the country’s economy.

“The government should create a form of intervention so that those that are trading in this frozen food business will be encouraged to take up livestock production.”

The overall effect would impact positively on job creation, boost the nation’s food security, agricultural sector and the economy generally, he said.

July 17, 2015;