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Kenya: Tough Times for Consumers as Price of One Kilogram of Sugar Hits Record High

Narok — Consumers will have to dig dipper into their pocket as prices of sugar hit record high.

A one kilo of the commodity now retails at about Sh200, up from Sh150 a few weeks ago.

Speaking to KNA, Emmanuel Saruni, a supervisor in Kanini Haraka Enterprises Limited in Narok town said the wholesale price of sugar had jumped from Sh7,000 up to Sh9,500 per 50 Kilograms of sugar in the past two weeks.

“Sales on sugar have decreased for the past two weeks, maybe because of the price increase or maybe consumers are looking for alternatives” Saruni said.

Mohamed Adan, a shopkeeper in Narok town, said one kilogram of sugar is selling at Shs.200 from Ksh.150 compared to the past two weeks, and it might retail at higher prices in the coming days.

“My usual customers who buy sugar twice every week, have changed to once in a week,” Adan said.

According to small businesses, traders that rely on sugar as a key ingredient such as bakeries, confectioneries and hotels are facing declining profit margins as they struggle to absorb the increased costs without passing them to their customers.

Sarah Nyongesa, a bakery owner in Narok town said the price increase on sugar has affected her business, saying she has in turn increased the prices of her products to her customers.

“In the previous year, one Kilogram of cake was sold at Ksh.1,300, but for now it sells at Shs. 2,000,” added Nyongesa.

Sharon Naeku, a hotel business Woman in Narok town, confirmed that she is buying one kilogram of sugar at Shs. 200, hence the price increase on sugar has contributed to decrease in her sales.

“I changed the prices of foods. For example, a cup of tea sells at Ksh. 50 from Ksh.30. while other hotels sell at Ksh.70 from Ksh.50, which is a slight increase” Naeku said.

However, Naeku said during evening time, customers usually flow into her business premise and order tea before they proceed to their houses or homes after work, but for the past two weeks the trend has changed drastically.

Josephine Musombi, a Majengo resident in Narok, said the rising prices on sugar has forced her to change the way she consumes tea in a day.

“I normally drink tea three times a day. Nowadays, I do take one time and that is in the morning. It is becoming expensive to buy sugar every week or buy a cup of tea in hotels,” Musombi added.

Sugar consumers are going deeper into their pockets to buy the commodity as prices skyrocketing.

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