Bakeries in Nigeria are ‘going extinct’


Nigerian Emmanuel Onuorah has little interest in politics – he’s a baker and just wants to sell bread.

But recently in Nigeria, his job has become close to impossible.

“In the past year, wheat flour has gone up by more than 200%, sugar has gone up by almost 150%, eggs that we use for baking have gone up by about 120%,” he says.

“We are running at a loss,” he says. He’s had to lay off 305 of his 350 staff. “How will they feed their families?”

As the president of the Premium Breadmakers Association of Nigeria, he’s at the centre of a movement. In July, he rallied close to half a million bakers to close their doors for four days in a “withdrawal of services” action.

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“As an industry, so many bakeries have gone extinct and that was why we withdrew services to bring out our own concerns and our own challenges to the doorstep of Nigerians and to the government,” he said.

He was hoping the government would take notice and reduce taxes on the products they import.

Despite his costs tripling, Mr Onuorah says he can only raise his prices by 10-12%. His customers can’t afford more than that.

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