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Global Price Watch: December 2011 Food Prices


The Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET) monitors trends in staple food prices in countries vulnerable to food insecurity. The Price Watch provides an update on trends in selected urban centers. Prices for key markets and commodities monitored are made available in the Price Watch Annex.

  • In West Africa, prices remain higher than last year but markets appear to operate normally in most cases by transferring grain supplies between surplus markets in the Guinean zone and deficit markets in the Sahel.

  • Trade restrictions and continued violence are limiting market activity in South Kordofan State and Blue Nile State in Sudan and in northern South Sudan.

  • In Southern Africa, maize prices are stable or seasonally rising. In southern Malawi, price rises are more pronounced.

  • In East Africa, prices in Uganda, Ethiopia, and Somalia declined as harvests came on to markets, but in Kenya, maize prices remain quite high. Prices also remained high in Somalia’s Juba Valley trade basin.

  • In Central Asia, a very healthy wheat harvest in Kazakhstan led to significant wheat price declines which have been transmitted to markets in northern Afghanistan, but prices of wheat and wheat flour remain high in Tajikistan.

  • After good maize and beans harvests from the postrera season, supplies are adequate in Central America, but maize and beans prices may rise over the next several months due to high demand for regional exportable supplies in Mexico.