The Market Monitor - Trends and impacts of staple food prices in vulnerable countries, Issue 27 - April 2015
In Q1-2015, FAO’s global cereal price index fell a further 13 percent year-on-year. It is now 5 percent lower than in Q4-2014.
Real prices of wheat have fallen by 10 percent over the last quarter. Prices are 20 percent lower than in Q1-2014 and at their lowest levels since mid-2010, thanks to large supplies, favourable production forecasts and strong export competition.
Real prices of maize have largely stabilized, falling just 2 percent since Q4-2014. Even so, prices are 17 percent lower than in Q1-2014. Although production has started to contract slightly, large carry-over stocks will ensure ample global supply.
Real prices of rice have fallen by 3 percent since Q4-2014 to pre-crisis levels last seen in early 2008.
Global market supplies remain ample and competitively priced.
In Q1-2015, real prices for crude oil reached half what they were the year before. This is translating into significantly lower diesel and gasoline prices in some countries.
• The cost of the minimum food basket increased severely (>10%) during Q1-2015 in eight countries: Cameroon, Colombia, Mozambique, Peru, Zambia, Tajikistan, South Sudan and Syria. High increases (5–10%) were seen in nine countries. In the other 50 monitored countries, the change was low or moderate (<5%).
- Price spikes, as monitored by ALPS (Alert for Price Spikes), are evident in India, Ghana, Nepal, Rwanda and Sudan (see the map below). These spikes indicate crisis levels for one of the two most important staples in the country, whether they are maize, rice, wheat, sorghum or bananas.