(4) Cooking oil
(9) Bottled water
(10) Powdered milk
If the minimum wage is N30,000 per month, basically, we need to come up with a formula whereby about 5kg of all these items can be purchased at a quarter of that. For Nigeria to be at ease with herself, a man who is the sole breadwinner of a family of four, should be able to feed his wife and two kids on all these items for a month at no more than N7,500.
It is either we find a way to reduce the prices or we increase the minimum wage so feeding costs no more than a quarter of take-home pay. How we step up mass production of food items is a challenge we need to face as a people.
How many Nigerian food companies can churn out 1m kg bags of rice a month? Mass production is what brings prices down and until Nigeria gets around this problem, we will continue to be inflation-plagued.
Across the board, our inability to mass produce goods is our biggest failing as a people. We have great tailors for instance but they sew suits in ones and twos, whereas a Hugo Boss factory will churn out 5,000 suits a day.
This is not really a government matter as everywhere else in the world, it is the private sector that has pioneered mass production. I want to see private capital injected into the Nigerian economy to churn out these goods in their thousands.