By Tunde Osho
World food prices were steady in January 2018 from December, as rising prices for cereals and vegetable oils were balanced out by lower quotations for dairy and sugar, the United Nations food agency has said.
The Food and Agriculture Organization, FAO’s food price index, which measures monthly changes for a basket of cereals, oilseeds, dairy products, meat and sugar, averaged 169.5 points, nearly unchanged from December.
Food prices on international markets were almost 3 percent lower than last January, FAO said.
Agricultural commodities have emerged from a highly volatile period and FAO has said it expects them to remain stable over the next decade.
FAO raised its forecast for global cereals output in 2017 to 2.64 billion tonnes, 1.3 percent higher than 2016’s harvest and an all-time record high.