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Murang’a residents decry soaring food prices

Residents of Murang’a County are forced to dig deeper into their pockets as prices of common vegetables soar.
The residents complained of shortage of vegetables at local markets as the available ones were being sold at exorbitant prices.
A spot check by KNA at Mukuyu market within Murang’a town, revealed that prices of vegetables have doubled forcing residents to spend more so as to avail meals for their families.
Some traders in the market are complaining of being forced to search for commodities from neigbhouring counties including Nyeri and Kirinyaga.
One of the traders, Margret Wanjiru said that the vegetables they get are expensive and residents cannot afford since the prices are beyond their means.
“At times we stock foodstuff but unfortunately customers shun them since the prices have increased. By end of the day the perishable vegetables got bad subjecting traders to incur huge losses,” narrated Wanjiru.
She stated that traders are also incurring high expenses to search for vegetables saying sometimes they are forced to go as far as Laikipia and Nyandarua to source food stuff.
“A month ago, a 50-kilo bucket of potatoes was selling at Sh. 400 but currently the price has shot to more than Sh. 800, a price which has forced residents to minimize usage of potatoes in their meals,” added Wanjiru.
Wanjiru continued, “In February, we could sell a kilo of onions, carrots and French beans between Sh30 and Sh70 but currently no commodity is selling at less than Sh. 100 per kilo.”
Another vegetable trader, Mary Wambui said delay of rains has greatly affected prices of basic commodities in the market.
Wambui observed that, the dry spell which has been experienced in many parts of the country has also affected quality of vegetables.
“We hope the ongoing rains will help in growing of vegetables as the situation has worsened and has left many families without enough meals,” added Wambui.
A trader at Murang’a town, Peter Wanjohi on his part said customers are shunning their vegetables not only because of high prices but also of poor quality.
He said some vegetables were affected by diseases while at farms occasioning poor quality of the available vegetables.
“Earlier I used to receive more than a hundred buyers who used to buy varieties of items but currently am only receiving about 30 customers who are buying half of the varieties they used to purchase earlier,” Added Wanjohi.
By Bernard Munyao/Ann Muchahi

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