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News > Thailand

FAO Reports a Rise in Food Prices for Eight Months in a Row

  • Farmers collect a tomato's harvest, Egypt.

    Farmers collect a tomato's harvest, Egypt. | Photo: Twitter/ @FAOstatistics

Published 7 February 2021

The FAO food price index averaged 113.3 points in January, the highest monthly average since July 2014.

United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) warned of the continuous rise in food prices amid the COVID-19 pandemic, noting that the highest monthly average was recorded in January.


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The FAO food price index averaged 113.3 points last month, representing a 4.3 percent increase compared to December 2020.  

The latest rise was due to significant increases in the sub-indexes for sugar, cereals, and vegetable oils. Values for meat and dairy also rose but to a lesser extent.

Corn prices, which soared 11.2 percent, driven the rise in the cereal price index. The meat index posted a 1 percent increase led by strong poultry imports, especially from Brazil. 

The vegetable oil index rose 5.8 percent and touched a peak since May 2012 due to "lower-than-expected" palm oil production in Indonesia and Malaysia. 

Following worsening crop prospects in the European Union, Russia, Thailand, and drought weather conditions in South America, sugar prices climbed to 8.1 percent. 

The FAO price index measures monthly changes for a basket of food products made up of grains, oilseeds, dairy, meats, and sugar.

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