Global food prices drop for 5th consecutive month

The UN's Food Prices Index has fallen for the fifth month in a row in a sign that one of the main pressures pushing up the cost of living around the world could ease, the BBC reports.

The index fell to 138 in August and is now lower than it was before Russia's invasion of Ukraine. The countries were both major exporters of crops including sunflower oil, corn and wheat.

Cereal prices went down 1.4%, led by a 5.1% drop in international wheat prices on improved production prospects, especially in Canada, the US and Russia, higher seasonal availability as well as the resumption of exports from the Black Sea ports in Ukraine for the first time in over five months of interruption.

Prices also declined for vegetable oil (-3.3%) as lower cost of palm, sunflower and rapeseed oils, more than offset higher soyoil quotations; dairy (-2%), namely butter and milk powders; meat (-1.5%), namely poultry; and sugar (-2.1%) which reached its lowest since July last year, due to an increase in the sugar export cap in India, and lower ethanol prices in Brazil.

However, despite the slowdowns of the previous months, the food price index is still 7.9% above its value a year ago.

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