World food prices maintained their upward trend for the second consecutive month, according to data released by the United Nations for food and agriculture (FAO).
The FAO Food Price Index averaged 130.0 points in September 2021, up 1.2% from in August and 32.8% more than in September 2020, FAO said in a recent report.
The increase in the FAO price index, which tracks the monthly evolution of the international prices of the most commonly traded food products in the world, “is mainly attributable to to the increase in the prices of most cereals and vegetable oils ”, explained the UN agency noting that the prices of dairy products and sugar also strengthened while the sub-index of meat prices remained stable.
In detail, by averaging 132.5 points in September, the FAO cereal price index rose by 2, 0% compared to the previous month.
Due to a tightening of exportable supplies in a context of strong demand, world wheat prices have thus increased by almost 4%, i.e. a level no less than 41% higher than that recorded a year ago.
Also on the rise, international rice prices posted an average value 38% higher than that recorded last year at the same period.
While it appears that world maize prices rose only moderately (0.3%) during the same month, the FAO indicated, however, that those -this remained high, at a level 38% higher than that of September 2020.
Note that international barley prices have, for their part, jumped 2.6%, mainly due to “sustained demand, lower production prospects in the Russian Federation and gains in other markets,” FAO said in its report.
At an average of 168.6 points in September, the FAO vegetable oil price index rose by 1.7% compared to the previous month and nearly 60% since September 2020. This is the third consecutive month of increase and the highest level reached in ten years.
Indeed, as the United Nations agency points out, “international palm oil prices have reached their highest level for 10 years, under the effect of strong global import demand and fears about the consequences of the lack of migrant workers on production in Malaysia ”.
Unlike the international prices of soybean oil and sunflower oil, which declined in September, it emerges from the said report that those of oil of rapeseed have clearly appreciated.
With an average value of 117.9 points, an increase of 1.7 points compared to August, the FAO dairy product price index has risen 1.5% since August.
According to the organization, this increase is due to sustained global import demand and to “seasonal factors in Europe and Oceania which have pulled up the international prices of all dairy products, especially butter ”.
Regarding the sugar price index, the FAO report indicates that it averaged 121.2 points in September, thus increasing by 0.5% compared to the previous month and by 53.5% compared to the same month of the past year.
According to the agency’s explanations, this increase is linked to unfavorable weather conditions and the rise in ethanol prices in Brazil, the world’s largest sugar producer .
Regarding the FAO meat price index, the data collected shows that it averaged 115.5 points in September. If its level remained practically identical to that recorded in the previous month, it achieved an increase of 26.3% compared to the same month of last year.
It should be noted that the prices of sheep meat and bovine meat have increased during the last month following a limited supply. On the other hand, continues the FAO, after nine consecutive months of increase, the prices of poultry meat fell, due to the increase in the volume of world supply. Just like those of pigmeat which declined, “under the effect of a drop in import demand in China and sluggish domestic demand, especially in Europe,” said the organization.
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