World cereal production in 2016 is set to amount to 2 521 million tons, just 0.2% off last year's large output and the third-highest global performance on record, according to FAO's first forecast for the new season, released on Thursday. Large inventory levels and relatively sluggish global demand mean that market conditions for staple food grains appear stable for at least another season, the agency's latest Cereal Supply and Demand Brief predicts.
Food markets are more stable and prices for most agricultural commodities are sharply lower than they have been in recent years, according to the latest edition of FAO's biannual Food Outlook report and a new update to the Organization's monthly Food Price 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.
Food commodity markets are becoming more balanced and less price volatile than in recent years thanks to improved supplies and a recovery in global inventories of cereals, according to FAO's Food Outlook report published on Friday.