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Best of NAMA 2022

By Keith Good, University of Illinois Farmdoc project

Bloomberg writer Agnieszka de Sousa reported today that, "Global food costs edged down again, extending their retreat to the lowest in 17 months, although consumers continue to feel the pinch at grocery stores.

"A United Nations' index of food-commodity costs eased 0.6% in February, down for an 11th month in the longest run of losses in data going back three decades. Last month's fall was driven by cooking oils and dairy, and the overall gauge is down 19% from a record set a year ago when Russia's invasion of Ukraine disrupted grain exports.

"A year into the war, wheat prices are under pressure from ample harvests in producers like Russia and Australia, while vegetable oils and meat costs have also slid. Still, it takes time for that to filter through to stores, where prices are also kept high because of energy, labor and transport costs."

Reuters writer Nigel Hunt reported today that, "The Food and Agriculture Organization's (FAO) price index, which tracks the most globally traded food commodities, averaged 129.8 points last month against 130.6 for January, the agency said on Friday. It was the lowest reading since September 2021."

The Reuters article pointed out that, "In a separate report on cereals supply and demand, the FAO issued a first preliminary forecast for global wheat production in 2023, with a year-on-year decline to 784 million tonnes seen although the crop would still be the second highest on record."

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