Food Culture: Nigerian Eating Habits

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Food culture
Historically and traditionally, Nigerian eating habits consisted of large one-course meals, comprised mainly of carbohydrates (eba, fufu). Water was the primary beverage served with meals (Everyculture, 2015). Those that have benefited from enjoying their meals with sodas or cold beers were regarded as the elite (Falola, 2000). Crops such as yam were and are still commonly consumed amongst those in both the rural and urban communities, this staple food acts in many ways as the potato in the western diet. Along with the prominence of yams in the Nigerian diet, corn and rice are also key crops. Rice is not only grown locally but also imported and it is used for porridge, as well as a traditional ceremonial meal known as Jollof Rice
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Diets in the southern parts of the country (Lagos included) consist of corn, yams and sweet potatoes normally served with a palm oil based stew including chicken or other assortment of meats. Additionally, tropical fruits such as papaya, pineapples, coconuts and mangoes are particularly popular. This varies considerably from the north which uses millet and corn as the basis of several meals (Falola, 2000). Over 50% of the country’s population work within the agriculture sector with many engaging in subsistence farming (Deloitte, 2015). Westernisation of Nigerian culture
The middle-class Nigerian youth have become more exposed to western culture through increased international travel and access to media, the imitation of western culture has become widespread. The country has also grown as a tourism and business destination with the international airport of Lagos facilitating over 10 million international visitors (Proshareng, 2015).

The traditional Nigerian elements still exist within pockets of society, however, the growing middle class in urban cities such as Lagos, demand the same experiences they encounter on their travels or see in the media. As with teenagers all over the world, teenagers in Lagos enjoy socialising in trendy environments. Target

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