In October, the FAO Food Price Index was at its highest in the past decade, primarily driven by high vegetable oil and cereal prices.
In addition to elevated food prices, brent crude oil prices and some global fertilizer prices have also been on an upward trend. Combined with the depreciation of various local currencies in the region, this could negatively affect planting in the 2021/22 season.
Despite many countries having registered above average maize harvests in 2021,maize price trends are mixed across the region. While Malawi and Tanzania’s national average maize prices are trending below average, the prices in South Africa and Zambia, the 2 key suppliers in the region are trending above average.
The impact of international maize demand from overseas markets as well as the Eastern Africa region which is experiencing ongoing drought will need close monitoring.