Nigeria’s produce scarcity: Tomato & pepper shortages may finally wake Yorubas up to joy of farming – Tola Adenle

May 26, 2016


Fado Fado's photo.

Tomatoes priced at N700.00 at a chain store at the height of the shortages; it would sell for N4,000 – N5000 in open markets & “roadside sellers”.

Photo Credit: Facebook through Dr. Kas Salawu

AWEs Veggie Patch

A tiny veggie patch at Akure

The patch has two pepper plants; the one on the right has 62 (yes, I counted them) fully-developed and ready-to-ripen peppers. My sister plucked ten of the sixty-two for me before I left Akure.

She also planted amunu tutù – a vegetable – efinrin (a spice), and ewedu – a vegetable that cooks out like okro. A smaller patch – not photographed – has Ugwu an Eastern Nigerian staple and ginger. Meanwhile, a younger sister plants elegede, a veggie from pumpkin.

Photo Credit: May 2016, Depo Adenle


Tiny Veggie Patch

Tiny Veggie Patch at Akure (another view) shows its very narrow extent

Photo Credit: May 2016, Depo Adenle

Ekiti West [Anglican] Diocese Upland Rice

Ekiti’s Upland Rice, produced by Ekiti West [Anglican] Diocese. Price: Nigerian N400.00. 1 Kg. is a little over 2 lbs. (US$1 = N370.00 this week)

Photo Credit: May 2016, Depo Adenle


All hopes should not be lost about Yorubas rising to face and meet the challenges of growing what they like to eat.

While above two instances are minor and tentative steps, imagine the results we could get if each and everyone of those who are in positions to plant something start right now in the middle of another rainy season. Imagine what institutions such as churches, schools and secondary high schools, et cetera all attack the now big-time problem of depending on the arid North with its over-fertilized land for food.

Yorubas, nay, all Nigerians in the rain forest of the south who have become dependent on food grown in the North, should ignore all the excuses and other statements emanating from the North on why a tiny basket of tomatoes would suddenly soar to N5,000.00 from N800.00. If tomatoes have suddenly become smitten with “ebola”-type virus, why have those peppers – tatase – and others also seen great rises in prices?

To survive, a people MUST grow what they eat, especially a people gifted with the climate to be self-sufficient in food production.


Akure in Ondo State and Ekiti West (Ẹfọ̀n-Alaaye area) are in Yorubas’ Southwestern Nigeria homeland. The area used to be home to rice planting with many towns and smaller towns  owning rice mills (including my hometown of Iju between Ikere and Akure) but that was before the government of Alhaji Shagari in the (1979 – 1983) discovered Nigerian government could actually create a few multi-millionaires (N1 was in the area of $1.80) by expending a lot of the country’s foreign exchange on importing tasteless rice.

The rest is history.




THURSDAY, MAY 26, 2016. 9:53 p.m. [GMT]




Subscribe to our RSS feed and social profiles to receive updates.

7 Comments on “Nigeria’s produce scarcity: Tomato & pepper shortages may finally wake Yorubas up to joy of farming – Tola Adenle”

  1. folakemiodoaje Says:

    I heard people are getting creative by making substituting carrots for tomatoes, necessity will awaken common sense in the end.



    • emotan77 Says:

      Dear Folakemi,

      Thanks for this, but carrots as tomatoes? That’s definitely a new one on me!

      I agree creativity is needed but it should be in the area of making use of small spare areas as well as containers for planting. In addition, farming on medium and bigger scales are needed.

      While government will not directly be employer of labor beyond creating the environment for job creation through massive road works and other infrastructural development, the old Farm Settlements of Western Nigeria should be strengthened in places where they are back in play such as Lagos State.

      Other states should also look in that direction.

      Sincere regards,

      Liked by 1 person


  2. salawuaolcom Says:

    Thank you so much, Mrs. Tola Adenle. Truth be told, the picture of the “sack” of tomatoes came from Mr. Faderin, a Nigerian restaurateur, at Marietta, Georgia: He and his lovely wife run the fine restaurant which serves a Yoruba cuisine right outside Atlanta, Georgia, USA. Mrs. Tola Adenle is doing a great job promoting awareness of our foods and prices in Nigeria and Dr. Adenle is using his skills as a photographer to show us how we may all grow vegetables in our own homes. Ire o!



    • emotan77 Says:

      Dear Doctor,

      Thanks for the info and the generous words. Thanks, too, for the info on the Atlanta Restaurant; I’ll keep it in my records because just a few months ago, Ms. Odoaje – she has comments on the current subject – wrote me from New York on a visit from Englan (I was in Maryland) asking for references on Nigerian restaurant. Happily, Professor Ayinde Fabunmi supplied me with a name which I sent back to Ms. Odoaje who visited the restaurant and scored it high.

      I will check out the link you’ve supplied; thanks v. much.

      Sincere regards,



    • emotan77 Says:

      Thanks, Doctor. I just checked out Fad Dining & Restaurant through the link you supplied and saw the many services it provides, including book launches, birthdays …

      I may check it out when in Atlanta some day.

      Sincere regards,



  3. Timothy Otunla Says:

    Yes we did! Yes we can! Yes we shall! Yes we must.

    Led by our governments but if not, by dint of individual effort and the deep sense of communal pride and Yoruba common purpose as good example to other Nigerian nationalities.


    Ùlú A MỌ OORE,O.

    Sent from my iPad




    • emotan77 Says:

      What a great idea, Dear Ẹ̀gbọ́n!

      Though not always one to pile work on government as THE main one it’s supposed to do – governance aimed at making citizens’ lives better has never been well done – I definitely believe a campaign along catchy phrases as radio and tv jingles could work wonders.

      Mo kún f’ọpẹ́, Sir – I’m full of thanks/thanks v much, Sir.




Leave comments

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: