World food prices fell further in December and even fell back below their level of a year ago, after a year marked by soaring prices, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization said on Friday. food and agriculture (FAO).
The FAO food price index, which tracks the change in international prices of a basket of commodities, fell 1.9% compared to November 2022. This is its ninth consecutive decline after March's record rise following Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
This index averaged 132.4 points in December, “ie 1% less than its value a year earlier. However, for 2022 as a whole […] the index averaged 143.7 points, or 14.3% more than the average value for 2021”, indicates the FAO.
"It's a good thing that food prices are calming down after two very volatile years," said Máximo Torero, FAO's chief economist, adding that it was essential to "stay vigilant and focus on the 'alleviation of global food insecurity'.
The vegetable oil price index, down 6.7%, drove this monthly decline. It falls to its lowest level since February 2021, as prices for palm, soybean, rapeseed and sunflower oils all fell in December.
The FAO cereal price index is down 1.9% from November, due to greater post-harvest wheat availability in the southern hemisphere and a drop in world prices for corn.