March 30, 2023

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Food items: Wrong progress in April

World food prices fell slightly in April, following a record rise. Nevertheless, uncertainties remain high and the challenge of food security remains difficult to meet.

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) announced on Friday that world food prices had fallen slightly in April after reaching a historic milestone last March.

good news ? Attention, the system underscores, because these courses are at a high level due to the war in Ukraine. In the wake of this “improvement”, one sees “a moderate fall in the prices of vegetable oils and grains,” which has pushed down the FAO index on food prices.

It should be noted that this indicator follows a monthly change of 0.8% in the international price of a basket of basic food items compared to March. It is noteworthy that this small decline follows two consecutive gains in February and March. At the same time, the conflict in Ukraine is stuck without a diplomatic solution and the outlook for sowing seems less pessimistic than expected in Ukraine and around the world.

The FAO vegetable oil index fell below average by 5.7% in April, with palm oil from Indonesia, the world’s leading exporter, at historically high levels due to “uncertainty about export availability”.

Since the Indonesian government announced the ban ten days ago, the price of the world’s most consumed oil, already close to an all-time high, has risen by almost 14%. Meanwhile, the FAO cereals index fell 0.7% in April, thanks to a 3% drop in global maize prices. Wheat growers still receive 0.2% due to the closure of Ukrainian ports and the uncertain climate of floating crops in the United States.

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The siege of maritime exports continues in Ukraine, from the Sea of ‚Äč‚ÄčAzov, to the port of Odessa in the Black Sea, which is generally 60%, since the beginning of the attack in late February. Country function.

“This small decline in the index is a welcome relief, especially for low-income countries, but food prices are nearing a recent high, continuing to reflect market tensions and pose a challenge to food security. For those most vulnerable,” the FAO chief economist said. Maximo Torero Cullen.

The Global Food Crisis Network, a FAO member with the European Union and the World Food Program, on Wednesday expressed concern that nearly 200 million people were suffering from severe food insecurity before the crisis began. Conflict.

Despite the crisis in politics, the economy and the climate, especially in the horn of Africa, international food aid to the most vulnerable countries has fallen to its lowest level in five years.

The FAO, which also released its bulletin on grain supply and demand, predicted that world trade for the summer would be about 1.2% lower than the previous year.

Sami Nemili with AFP / ECO Inspirations