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Slight relief for ugali lovers as unga price falls by Sh23

The price of a 2kg packet of maize flour has dropped by an average of Sh23 in less than a month, easing inflationary pressure.

The 2kg packet of Soko, Ndovu and Jogoo maize flour brands were on Friday retailing at Sh126, Sh125 and Sh125 respectively in Tuskys supermarkets.

Soko, Ndovu and Jogo maize flour brands were on April 3 retailing at Sh153, Sh151 and Sh147 respectively in the same supermarkets.

The costs have reduced due to lower maize prices following the issuance of cheaper grain from the strategic grain reserve.

Farmers have also released horded grains fearing prices my sharply reduce, millers say.

The Treasury in March scrapped the 50 per cent duty levied on maize imported from outside the East African Community and started selling 1 million bags of the grains for Sh3,000 each, down from the market cost of Sh4,500.

The market cost of a bag of maize has dropped to an average of Sh3,800 in Eldoret, according to a government report.

Flour prices hit a record high of Sh153 and went past the 2011 peak of Sh150, forcing the government to introduce a raft of measures to reverse the trend. High cost of food saw inflation jump to 10.28 in March from 9.04 the previous month, taking it beyond the Treasury’s preferred upper limit of 7.5 per cent.

Millers had on April 13 warned that the drop in maize flour prices is temporary, arguing that the cost will revert to market levels once cheap grains from the government is exhausted this week.

“It is important to appreciate that once the Strategic Food Reserve intervention maize is milled, we will expect finished product prices to adjust to market prices for maize grain at the time (cheap maize was released),” Cereal Millers Association said in a statement earlier.

Nick Hutchinson, Chairman of Cereal Millers Association, declined to comment on the prices.

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