U.N. FAO: World food prices fall in July to lowest.
Global food prices fell in July to their lowest level in almost six years led by falling dairy and vegetable oil costs, the United Nations food agency said on Thursday.
The Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) food price index, which measures monthly changes for a basket of cereals, oilseeds, dairy, meat and sugar, averaged 164.6 points in July, down 1.7 points or 1.0 percent from June.
July’s reading is the lowest on the index since September 2009.
In July, the dairy price index dropped 7.2 percent from the previous month, mainly due to lower import demand from China, the Middle East and North Africa amid abundant EU milk production which has resulted in good availability of dairy products for export.
The July vegetable oil price index was some 5.5 percent below its June level, reaching its lowest value since July 2009.
The recent slide was primarily caused by a fall in international palm oil prices due to increased production in Southeast Asia combined with slower exports, especially from Malaysia, and a further weakening of soy oil prices on ample supplies for export in South America and a favorable outlook for global supply in 2015/16.
The cereal price index rose by 2.0 percent from June, but was still 10.1 percent below July last year’s level.
For the second consecutive month, higher wheat and maize prices, in part due to unfavorable weather in North America and Europe, kept the cereal index rising, but rice prices continued to fall.
In July the meat price index remained nearly unchanged from the previous month. An increase in international prices of bovine meat offset a decline for pig meat and ovine meat, while prices for poultry remained stable.
The sugar price index rose by 2.5 percent from June 2015, largely due to less than ideal harvesting conditions in the main producing region of Brazil.