- High prices have persisted for the past three months despite some evidence of easing from 2022 peaks in certain countries.
- The rising inflation levels is about 88.9 per cent in low-income countries and 87.8 per cent in lower-middle-income countries.
Households should brace for even tougher times in coming months as cereal prices - the staple in most countries - are expected to rise further on the back of unending domestic food prices.
The World Bank in its latest food security update report notes that domestic food price inflation still remains high globally with major grain prices remaining mostly unchanged since January.
“High prices have persisted for the past three months despite some evidence of easing from 2022 peaks in certain countries, with rice price hikes mostly responsible for sustained high cereal prices,” the lender says.
According to a recent repot by the Capital Markets Authority (CMA), the cost of a 90-kilo bag of maize grain will vary depending on the source, but would be in the range of Sh5,500 to Sh5,600.
It however projects the likelihood of maize prices rising from an average of Sh4,800 to Sh6,000 for a 90kg bag if no cheap imports come as was promised by the government.
Wheat flour now retails at about Sh200 per 2-kilogram packet.
On the other hand, rice prices have been on the rise in the past three months, now retailing at an average Sh186 a kilo, increasing from Sh160 in January.
Kenya being a net importer of cereals, is most likely to be affected by the cereal prices hike on the back of inflation which has seen the price these commodities remain high.
Data by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) shows the costs of food, transport and non-alcoholic beverages pushed up inflation in the month of February to 9.2 per cent from 9.0 per cent the previous month.
This is way above the statutory requirement of 7.5 per cent, with experts projecting a further rise on the back of the weakening shilling against the Us dollar which has put more pressure on importers with increased import costs.
Importers have been forced to pass over the extra cost to consumers through hiked commodity prices.