Global food commodity prices fell in April amid expectations of ongoing robust supplies of many key staples. The FAO Food Prices Index averaged 168 points in April, down 1.8% from March although remaining 10% higher than a year earlier.
Major food commodity prices fell in November, reversing about half their rise in the previous month, as the cost of internationally-traded staples, except for sugar, fell across the board. The FAO Food Price Index averaged 156.7 points in November, down 1.6 percent from its revised October average, and 18% below its value a year earlier.
The FAO Food Price Index continued to decline in January, averaging 182.7 points for the month, or 1.9 percent below its December 2014 level. Lower prices reflect strong production expectations as FAO also raised its 2014 forecast for world cereal production to a record high and noted that early indications for crops in 2015 are favorable.
The FAO Food Price Index was down for a third consecutive month in June, a decline mostly influenced by lower wheat, maize and palm oil prices that reflected ample supplies and improved global production prospects for these commodities.
The FAO Food Price Index was down for the second consecutive month in May, continuing its retreat from the 10-month high it experienced in March. Prices fell as generally ample supplies weighed on international prices for most commodities included in the Index.
Weather conditions in various countries and political tensions in the Black Sea region have made food markets more volatile, FAO reports in the new Food Outlook. In its first major forecast for 2014, FAO puts cereal production at 2 458 million tons (including milled rice), down some 2.4% from the 2013 record, though global output is still expected to be the second largest ever.
The FAO Food Price Index averaged 206.3 points in November 2013, almost unchanged from the revised value of 206.6 points in October, but 9.5 points (4.4%) below its November 2012 value. A sharp decline in sugar prices last month nearly offset the rise in oils. Cereals averaged slightly lower but meat and dairy values were stable.
FAO Food Price Index dropped for the fourth month in a row in August reaching its lowest level since June 2012. The index, which measures the monthly change in the international prices of a basket of food commodities, averaged 201.8 points in August 2013, nearly 4 points (1.9%) below its July value and 11 points (5.1% less than in August 2012.
The FAO Food Price Index fell 1% in October 2012, and for the first ten months of the year food prices were on average 8% lower than in the same period in 2011. The Index dipped two points to 213 points from September's revised level of 215 points. The decline was largely due to lower international prices of cereals and oils and fats, which more than offset increases in dairy and sugar prices.
The world could face a food crisis of the kind seen in 2007/08 if countries restrict exports on concerns about a drought-fuelled grain price rally, the UN food agency FAO warned, after reporting a surge in global food prices in July.