The Association of Master Bakers has decried the soaring cost of essential raw materials for the production of bread, threatening to shut down their bakeries if the Federal Government does not intervene in the matter.
The bakers, who converged on Ikeja, Lagos State, denounced the duty payable on imported wheat and their inability to access foreign exchange from the Central Bank of Nigeria for raw materials.
The bread bakers also said the price of bread could go up soon.
Speaking on behalf of the association, the Chairman of its South-West, Mr. Abibu Abolusodun, said the majority of bread bakers were wallowing in debt as a result of harsh business climate.
He said, “The flour millers should revert to the old prices of wheat flour and sugar. These are two major ingredients that determine the price of bread in the market.
“We are the second largest employers of labour next to the government. Our members no longer break even at the end of production, not to talk of making profit. Most members of the association are bogged down in debt, thereby forcing them to close business.
“The essence of business is to make profit, but the situation on the ground may make majority of bakers to wind up, since most of us are already in debt. If the harsh situation persists, bread may disappear from the table menu.”