Agricultural Market Information System (AMIS) Market Monitor, No. 78– May 2020


Although global supplies of basic foodstuffs remain abundant, shocks created by COVID-19 started taking a toll on food markets last month. The historic plunge of oil prices, precipitous fall in ethanol production, and deceleration in feed demand led to sharp drops in maize prices. At the same time, protectionist trade policies, albeit temporary, raised concerns for global wheat and rice flows.
With the global economic contraction in 2020 now forecast to be worse than the 2009 Great Recession, continued depressed demand in the face of ample supplies are likely to keep markets under pressure. Previous crises demonstrate that international collaboration is paramount to help stabilize food markets and contain the burden of prolonged economic turmoil on the most vulnerable.