Home Commodities U.N. global food commodity prices fell in 2023; sugar posts only annual...

U.N. global food commodity prices fell in 2023; sugar posts only annual rise

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Jan. 5 (UPI) — Global food prices commodity declined to end 2023, according to a report released Friday by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization.

The agency said its Food Price Index was down 13.7% for the whole of 2023 compared to the average value throughout 2022.

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The average, which tracks prices for a selection, or “food basket,” of world food commodities averaged 119.5 points in December, down 1.5% from November and 10.1% from December 2022.

FAO said only, the international sugar price index was higher in 2023 than it was the previous year.

Sugar, commodity prices fell 16.6% from November. On an annual basis though, world sugar prices were 14.9% higher than December 2022.

High sugar production in Brazil combined with lower use of sugarcane for ethanol production in India were major drivers of the December 2023 sugar price decline.

The cereal price index — wheat, barley, rice, and maize — rose 1.5% from November, partially caused by logistical disruptions from major exporting countries.

The meat price index dropped 1% from November, reflecting persistent weak import demand in Asia for pig meat. Regional cow and poultry demand was also lower.

FAO’s dairy price index was up 1.6% from November, but that was still 16.1% below December 2022 prices. That bump was driven by higher prices for cheese and butter with strong holiday sales in Western Europe.

Global vegetable oil commodity prices measured by FAO’s index fell 1.4% from November. That included softening demand for palm, soy, rapeseed, and sunflower seed oil.

A slowdown in biodiesel demand impacted soy oil in particular.

Vegetable oil prices were down 32.7% for 2023 as a whole, according to the FAO.

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