Peru

GIEWS Country Brief: Peru 03-February-2020

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FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT

  • Cereal production estimated at average level in 2019

  • Cereal import requirements in 2019 estimated at record highs

  • Prices of rice spiked in September 2019, after several months at low levels following record production in 2018

Cereal production estimated at average level in 2019

The 2019 cereal production is estimated officially at an average level of 5.2 million tonnes, among which 3.2 million tonnes of rice and 1.5 million tonnes of maize.

According to official estimates, rice production in January‑November 2019 is estimated at a near‑average level. Except in Amazonas and Arequipa, production has contracted across the country on an annual basis as low prices in the first half of 2019, following the record production in 2018, induced farmers to decrease plantings.

Similarly, maize production in 2019 is estimated at an average level, with 1.2 million tonnes of yellow maize and 300 000 tonnes of white maize. While the total area sown of maize is estimated to be 8 percent lower than the previous five‑year average, good yields contributed to the near‑average outputs.

Cereal import requirements in 2019 estimated at record highs

Cereal imports in the 2019 marketing year (January/December) are estimated at record highs of 6.2 million tonnes, about 15 percent higher than the previous five‑year average. Maize imports, which account for 60 percent of the total cereal imports, are estimated to be more than 25 percent above the average, supported by the strong demand of yellow maize for feed by the poultry sector. With the highest per capita consumption of chicken meat in Latin America, the poultry sector has been growing steadily in the country during the last two decades. In 2019, the gross production of the poultry sector is estimated to have increased by 18 percent, in value terms, compared to the five‑year average. Wheat imports, which explains more than 30 percent of the total cereal imports, are estimated at slightly above‑average levels, mainly reflecting stronger demand for human consumption, in line with an increasing population.

Prices of rice spiked in September 2019, after several months at low levels following record production in 2018

During the last quarter of 2019, wholesale prices of rice were generally higher than a year before, when the 2018 paddy production was a record high. Prices increased sharply from July to September 2019 as the output gathered during this period was about 20 percent lower year on year, mainly due to the low price levels at planting time. In January 2020, prices were about 10 percent higher than the low levels of a year earlier.

Prices of yellow maize have been stable since the beginning of 2019 due to adequate imports and average production. Similarly, prices of wheat flour were stable throughout 2019, mainly due to adequate imports.