African Reserves

Burkina Faso bakers demonstrate against soaring wheat prices

Earlier this week, the stores of some bakers who had already raised their prices were raided and closed. In response, other bakers across the West African country protested Thursday by closing their stores.

In a press release published by the association of bakers –Federation of Bakery, Pastry and Confectionery Patrons of Burkina Faso —Members have been advised that all bakeries are to remain closed until further notice. The statement further clarifies that the protest is an attempt to “save our bakeries.”

Much like the rest of Africa, wheat prices in Burkina Faso have jumped to $858 a tonne from $570.50 just a few months ago. This significant increase is due to a number of factors, including the war in Ukraine which disrupted the global wheat supply.

As you may know, many African countries rely on wheat exports from Ukraine and Russia to augment their local food sources. The two European countries are among the largest wheat producers in the world. Unfortunately, Russia’s war against Ukraine has made it impossible for the country (i.e. Ukraine) to export its grain due to a blockade on Odessa where Ukrainian ports are located.

Earlier this week, Senegalese President and African Union Chairperson Macky Sall revealed that he plans to visit Russia and Ukraine in the coming weeks. He visits warring nations in his capacity as chairman of the AU, as he seeks to pressure their leaders to resolve the conflict and lift the blockade on wheat exports to avert a likely famine in Africa.