The Food and Agriculture Organisation Cereal Price Index declined by 1.3 per cent from the previous month Image Credit: Bloomberg

Rome: The measure of changes in world food commodity prices remained broadly steady in November, with declining international prices of cereals, meat and dairy products offsetting increasing quotations for vegetable oils and sugar, the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) reported.

The FAO Food Price Index, which tracks monthly changes in the international prices of a basket of commonly-traded food commodities, averaged 135.7 points during November, a fraction below its level in October. The Index was now only 0.3 per cent higher than its level in November 2021.

The FAO Cereal Price Index declined by 1.3 per cent from the previous month, but it was still up 6.3 per cent from its value a year ago. World wheat and maize prices declined in November by 2.8 per cent and 1.7 per cent, respectively, partly influenced by the extension of the Black Sea Grain Initiative. By contrast, international rice prices moved up by 2.3 per cent.

The FAO Vegetable Oil Price Index increased by 2.3 per cent in November, ending seven consecutive months of decline. International palm and soy oil prices rose while rapeseed and sunflower oil prices dropped.

The FAO Dairy Price Index decreased by 1.2 per cent since October, with world quotations for butter, skim and whole milk powders falling amid lower import demand. Those for cheese increased, partly due to less buoyant export availabilities from leading producing countries in Western Europe.

The FAO Meat Price Index was 0.9 per cent lower in November than the previous month, as international bovine meat prices fell, as increased export supplies from Australia added to already-high supplies from Brazil, notwithstanding China’s continuing strong import demand. By contrast, world prices of all other meat types rebounded, led by higher quotations for bovine meat.

The FAO Sugar Price Index rose 5.2 per cent in November, influenced by solid buying amid tight global sugar supplies due to harvest delays in key producing countries and the announcement by India of a lower sugar export quota. Higher ethanol prices in Brazil also exerted upward pressure on world sugar prices.