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‘Gobe’ Inflation is 96% Higher than the National Average – High Production Cost or Gentrification?

Sefakor's insights from running Starfuds, an eatery in Adenta, reflect the challenges faced by many in the food industry. Despite the popularity of ‘Gobe’, its affordability is threatened by the relentless rise in ingredient prices.

A popular Ghanaian delicacy, gari and beans with fried ripe plantains recently christened ‘Gobe’, is one of the top 10 items with the highest inflation in April, according to recent data released by the Ghana Statistical Service.

The Ghanaian meal recorded an inflation rate of 49.1% in April, compared to the national average of 25%. The meal also ranked 9th on the list of 20 items with the highest inflation rate. However, the 49.1 % represents a marginal drop from 50.1% in March 2024, although it still ranked 9th that month. If you patronise ‘Gobe’ regularly, chances are that your inflation rate may be higher than the national average.


Read also: https://theaccratimes.com/kwesi-yankah-writes-awengaa/

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‘Gobe’, until recently, was considered a meal for the average poor Ghanaian. Its filling nature and high protein content made it a preferred meal for many who wanted to cut food costs. It appears the price of the food commonly sold on the street has dramatically changed in recent times.

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Sefakor Akpadey, a ‘Gobe’ seller with over seven years of experience, shed light on the reasons behind this price surge. The Accra Times reached out to her when she returned from the popular Madina Market.

Gobe joint
Starfuds: A ‘Gobe’ Joint in the heart of Accra

She pointed to the escalating costs of beans, plantains, and palm oil—the key ingredients for ‘Gobe’ preparation.

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“In 2017, the beans I used were GH¢480 per 60–65 kg bag, but now its selling at GH¢2,500. It was GH¢2,000 some two months ago and GH¢2,400 last month,” she lamented.


Read also: https://theaccratimes.com/naa-okromo-the-mystery-girl-of-nungua/


Sefakor’s insights from running Starfuds, an eatery in Adenta, reflect the challenges faced by many in the food industry. Despite its popularity, ‘Gobe’’s affordability is threatened by the relentless rise in ingredient prices. Sefakor emphasised that maintaining reasonable prices often means sacrificing profits.

“We can’t increase prices to match the soaring costs of beans and plantains. We end up reducing portion sizes for plantain, but there’s only so much we can do,” she explained.

The popular name for ‘Gobe ‘used to be ‘yor ke gari’, which is a Ga phrase meaning beans and gari. However, in recent times, the younger generation gave it the name Gobe, which many say is an acronym for Gari, Oil Beans and Egg. While some speculated that this newfound fame (gentrification) might contribute to the price hike, Sefakor refuted this notion, attributing the increase solely to ingredient costs.

As Gobe remains a cherished and nutritious meal for many Ghanaians, Sefakor advocated for government intervention to support increased cultivation of the beans used in its preparation. Without such assistance, there’s a risk that Gobe could become unaffordable for the average person, depriving many of a beloved culinary tradition.

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