THE JCTR BASIC NEEDS AND NUTRITION BASKET
A Simplified Guide to the JCTR Basic Needs and Nutrition Basket
The guide can be used to promote healthy diets and improve knowledge on basic nutrition in Zambia.
The cost of living as measured by the Jesuit Centre for Theological Reflection (JCTR) Basic Needs and Nutrition Basket for Lusaka stood at K9, 305.38 for the month of February 2022, a K256.13 increase in comparison to the January, 2022 basket that stood at K9, 049.25. The upward movement in the basket is attributed to increased prices of some selected items. Of note, total food cost increased by a large margin moving from K3, 421.79 to K3, 768.35, a K346.56 increase. Particularly, 4kg of onions moved from K62.73 (K15.68/perKg) to K118.20 (29.55/perKg), a K55.47 increase, 1kg of kapenta moved from K244.34 to K271.52, a K27.18 increase, 4kg rice moved from K79.43 to K89.56, a K10.13 increase. Additionally, the nonfood but essential item section also recorded increases as the price of two 90Kg bag of charcoal which moved from K791.48 to K813.33, a K21.85 increase. Price decreases were however recorded in some items. Two 25Kg bags of mealie meal (Roller) reduced by K14.64 from K220.28 to K205.64, 3.6 litres of cooking oil also reduced by K7.00 from K166.63 to K159.63.
The February 2022 basket shows sustained upward price movements in the prices of essential items likely on account of a number of factors. Firstly, the first quarter of the year is a lean season and food prices tend to go up. Secondly, the instability in fuel pump prices has continued to have an impact on the cost of living. Pump prices for both petrol and diesel were recently adjusted upwards by over K2. Furthermore, on 22nd February, 2022 the Ministry of Agriculture announced the importation ban on onions and potatoes on the premise of supporting local production and local farmers. Evidently, this has yet again affected the price of onions on the market as local supply appears to be at variance with the demand of the commodity. Full statement here