The AFEX Wet Season Crop Production Report for 2023 forecasts a significant 32% rise in the price of paddy rice in the upcoming 2023/2024 crop production year.
Simultaneously, production output is anticipated to experience a growth of 3.6%. This projection is based on a comprehensive analysis of factors influencing rice production, as outlined in the report.
The report highlights the stability in rice production during 2023, attributing it to the absence of flooding, a stark contrast to the challenges faced in 2022 when approximately 100,000 hectares of rice farms were adversely affected.
The report acknowledges that the absence of floods in 2023 played a crucial role in stabilizing production, with farmers capitalizing on reduced fertilizer prices.
“In 2022, over 100,000 hectares of paddy rice were adversely affected by flooding, resulting in the decline of over 300,000mt,” the report stated. “However, the 2023 production season experienced little or no flooding, which helped to stabilize the production season.
There was a notable expansion in the land area under rice cultivation as farmers sought to capitalize on the favorable market conditions. Considering these favorable developments, our projections indicate a 3.6% increase in the production volume of paddy rice, resulting in an estimated total yield of 8.3 million metric tonnes in 2023.”
On the outlook for rice prices, the report points out that the decline in production due to the 2022 flooding and the ban on paddy rice exports in India are expected to contribute to a 32% increase in the price of rice. Despite an anticipated 4% increase in production, the report foresees a potential surge in the price of paddy rice.
The report extends its projections to other agricultural commodities, noting that maize prices are set to increase by 5% due to a forecasted 6.9% rise in production driven by high demand.
Additionally, sorghum prices are expected to increase by 20%, and cocoa prices are projected to witness a significant 70% year-on-year increase.
The backdrop of these projections is the ongoing challenge of rising food prices in Nigeria, with rice prices experiencing a notable 60.59% increase, according to the latest NBS food price watch for September.
While Nigeria has become a leading rice producer on the continent, efforts to translate this production success into more affordable prices for consumers are still underway.
In response, the federal government declared a state of emergency on agriculture in July, emphasizing the need for synergy between the ministries of agriculture and water resources to ensure year-round farming through effective irrigation.