GLOBAL— World food prices have dropped for a fifth straight month in August – led by a decline in global wheat prices – but still remained 7.9% higher than last year.

Within the index measuring a basket of five food commodity prices, cereals edged down 1.4% from July but were up 11.4% from August 2021.

FAO said the decline in cereal prices reflected improved production prospects in North America and Russia, and the resumption of exports from Black Sea ports in Ukraine.

The FAO said international wheat prices dropped 5.1% during August from the previous month on “improved production prospects in North America and the Russian Federation, as well as the resumption of exports from the Black Sea ports in Ukraine”.

Under a deal between Kyiv and Moscow that was brokered by the UN and Turkey in July, the first grain shipment left Ukraine on 1 August. Since then, the United Nations reports that Ukraine has exported more than 1 million tonnes of grain.

Vegetable oil prices dropped 3.3% month-on-month in August, the FAO said. Prices were down 1.5% from a year earlier.

Wheat prices dropped 5.1% during August from the previous month on improved production prospects in North America and the Russian Federation, as well as the resumption of exports from the Black Sea ports in Ukraine

The FAO noted that World soy oil prices rose moderately due to concerns over the impact of unfavorable weather conditions on production in the United States of America.

The organization added however that the gain was offset by lower quotations for palm, sunflower and rapeseed oils, reflecting increased availabilities of palm oil from Indonesia, due to lower export taxes, and a gradual resumption of sunflower oil shipments from Ukraine’s ports

Dairy prices fell 2% from July but remained 23.5% above levels in August last year. Cheese prices in particular increased for the tenth consecutive month, while those of milk eased amid expectations of increased supplies from New Zealand, even as production tracks lower in western Europe and the United States of America, said the FAO.

Meanwhile, meat prices dropped 1.5% and were up 8.2% on a year earlier. Sugar fell 2.1% month-on-month to the lowest price level since July last year. Prices were down 8.3% from August 2021.

The FAO Sugar Price Index decreased by 2.1 percent to its lowest level since July 2021, triggered mainly by high export caps in India and lower ethanol prices in Brazil.

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