As the rising cost of living continues to bite, many in northern Nigeria are turning to rice grains that millers once either normally rejected after processing or sold to farmers to feed their fish.

These are referred to in the Hausa language, widely spoken in the north, as afafata, which means "battling" because they are literally a battle to cook and eat as the grains are so hard.

"A few years ago, people didn't care about this type of rice, and we usually threw it away along with the rice hulls, but times have changed," Isah Hamisu, a rice mill worker in the northern city of Kano, told the BBC.

Despite the grains being broken, dirty and tough, afafata's cheaper price has made it more attractive for humans and helped poorer families to be able to afford to eat one of the staple foods in the country.

Fish farm owner Fatima Abdullahi said her fish love it but because people are now eating afafata its price has risen.

In general, prices in Nigeria are increasing at their fastest rate for nearly 30 years. On top of global pressures, President Bola Tinubu's cancellation of the fuel subsidy plus the devaluation of the currency, the naira, have added to inflation.

A standard 50kg (110lb) bag of rice, which could help feed a household of between eight and 10 for about a month, now costs 77,000 naira ($53, £41). This is an increase in price of more than 70% since the middle of last year and exceeds the monthly income of a majority of Nigerians. [BBC]

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