Vegetable farmers in Jos, Plateau State, say though 2018 saw price fluctuation in the commodity, it was still highly profitable and prepared them for 2019 with enough capital.
Daily Trust gathered that a bag of cabbage which sold for between N1,500 and N2, 000 in 2017 sold for between 7,000 and N10,000 in 2018. “It was a good year, better than past years and we made surplus gain,” said Mohammed Fodio, a vegetable farmer and dealer at the Building Materials vegetable market in Jos South Local Government Area.
Fodio explained that oftentimes, vegetable dealers met farmers in their farms to purchase the produce instead of waiting for them to get to the market.
He said, “2018 was the most profitable year in the last few years. We also didn’t encounter vegetable disease in 2018, yet there were no surplus vegetables. Also there was no accident recorded involving vehicles that conveyed vegetables to the southern part of the country. In 2017 we had many accidents but 2018 was different.”
He expressed hope that 2019 will also be profitable because the farmers made surplus gain from the 2018 sales adding that, “we have enough money for our products including fertilizer, so 2019 will be another good year.”`
Joseph Azi who owns an irrigation farm around Lamingo in Jos North echoed Fodio’s point when he said, “I don’t think there is any vegetable farmer that is not happy with 2018. It was indeed a good year and we look forward to 2019.”
However, Josephine Kadzei, a tomato dealer at the Jarawa tomato market told Daily Trust that 2018 was tough due to the unpredictability of prices in tomato.
She said, “Sometimes we buy tomatoes expensively from the farmers only to come to the market and find that the price has fallen and because it is a perishable good, we have no choice but to sell it based on the market price at a given time.”
Another woman who identified herself simply as Mama Agwom at the same market, also explained that the year was not bad and that the regular payment of salaries by government also increased the consumption of the produce. June and July 2018 was a very good period for us,” she said.