The benchmark for world food commodity prices declined significantly in July, with major cereal and vegetable oil prices recording double-digit percentage declines, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has reported.
The FAO Food Price Index averaged 173.8 in January, its highest value in almost two years, marking a 2.1% increase from its revised December value and 16.4% above its 2016 January level. The FAO Sugar Price Index surged 9.9% in the month, driven by expectations of protracted supply tightness in Brazil, India and Thailand.
International food commodity prices continued to decline in August as ample supplies, a slump in energy prices and concerns over China's economic slowdown all contributed to the sharpest fall of the FAO Food Price Index in almost seven years.
The FAO Food Price Index rose sharply in March, up 4.8 points, or 2.3%, to an average of 212.8, the highest level since May 2013. The Index, based on the prices of a basket of internationally-traded food commodities, saw prices increase in all groups except dairy, which fell for the first time in four months (-2.5%). Sugar, 7.9% and Cereals, 5.2% climbed the most.
Following two months of stability, the FAO Price Index rose slightly in September 2012, up 1.4%, or 3 points, from its level in August. The Index, based on the prices of a basket of internationally traded food commodities, climbed to 216 points in September from 213 points in August.