Global prices for cereal grains, dairy products and vegetable oils fell during September, pulling the Food Price Index to its lowest reading in at least a year, said the UN Food and Agriculture Organization. Corn prices dropped by more than 4 percent, "mostly on expectations of a very large crop in the United States and ample supply prospects globally," said the FAO.
Some 821 million people—1 in 9 of the world's population—suffer from hunger, said a UN report on Tuesday, the third year in a row that hunger increased globally. The upturn jeopardizes the UN goal of eradicating hunger by 2030. Hunger was on the decline for years, dropping below 784 million in 2014 before starting to creep upward. Now there are as many hungry people as in 2010, said the State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World report.
Sharp declines in the dairy and sugar prices, dropping by 6 percent or more in a month, pulled down the monthly Food Price Index to its lowest level this year, said the UN Food and Agriculture Organization. The index, which measures international prices for a basket of commodities, had been rising steadily until June.
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, in its 2018 report on The State of the World Fisheries and Aquaculture, says that fish consumption and fishing is expected to increase in the coming 15 years, though at a slower rate than in prior decades.
High temperature and inadequate rainfall are adversely affecting crop development in southern Africa, says the UN Food and Agriculture Organization. They result may be poor yields and heavier than usual infestations of the fall armyworm, which spreads in dry weather. In a special alert, the FAO said small harvests are "foreseen to intensify food insecurity in 2018, increasing the number of people in need of assistance."
The world’s farmers harvested a record 2.64 billion tonnes of wheat, rice, and feed grains in 2017, estimated the UN Food and Agriculture Organization. It was the group’s second sharp upward adjustment of its global production figure in two months.
Hog giant Smithfield Foods has launched a program to cut its greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent by 2025, but it is doing so largely by focusing on the fertilizer applications of its grain farmers. While that’s an important step, it also sidesteps the biggest source of the company’s emissions — its 19 million hogs, FERN’s latest story, in partnership with The WorldPost, reported. (No paywall)
The Green Revolution of high-yielding wheat, rice and maize varieties, boosted by synthetic fertilizers, is credited with averting famine in the developing world. In a speech at a London think tank, FAO director general Jose Graziano de Silva said, "The future of agriculture is not input-intensive, but knowledge-intensive."
The report on global hunger was the first since the UN set a goal of eradicating hunger by 2030. UN agencies, such as the Food and Agriculture Organization, have cited the role of warfare in hunger. According to the new UN report, 60 percent of the world's hungry people "live in countries affected by conflict," some 489 million people. But even in regions that are more peaceful, droughts or floods linked in part to the El Niño weather phenomenon, as well as the global economic slowdown, have also seen food security and nutrition deteriorate, said the report.
On the rise for the third month in a row, the Food Price Index is now the highest since January 2015, says the UN Food and Agriculture Organization. The latest increase in the index is due to higher prices for cereal grains, sugar and dairy. In early 2015, prices were declining from the peak in 2011, when drought affected global food supplies.