12 Jul 2017

Global food prices expected to remain low over next decade

3:08 pm on 12 July 2017

Slower growth in demand is keeping world food prices low, The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) says.

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Photo: 123rf

The latest OECD 10-year agricultural outlook predicts global food commodity prices to remain low over the next decade compared to previous peaks.

The report said demand in a number of emerging economies is expected to slow down and biofuel policies are having a diminishing impact on markets.

It forecasts per capita demand for food staples remaining flat, except in less developed countries.

Additional calories and protein consumption in the next ten years is expected to come mainly from vegetable oil, sugar and dairy products.

Growth in demand for meat is projected to slow, with no new sources of demand expected to maintain the momentum previously generated by China.

The report said growth in meat and dairy production is likely to come from both larger herds and higher output per animal.

It said milk production growth will accelerate compared to the previous decade, mainly in India and Pakistan.

The OECD is forecasting farmed fish production to be the fastest-growing protein source among all commodities.

And in agriculture, the growth is projected to slow to about half the previous decade's growth rate.

The report said food insecurity and malnutrition will remain a persistent global problem, requiring a co-ordinated international approach.