With the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) targetting to eliminate hunger by 2030, the indicies denote a tougher challenge ahead. The prices of food commodities shooting up drastically thereby steeping up number of people living in hunger or being malnutritioned. An immediate measure to bring down the prices of essential food commodities must be initated by all the governments concerned. More and more children are being forced to live in hunger. The condition may worsen in the days ahead. According to the reports, about 10% of the world population is affected by hunger. From the regional prespective, Asian and African countries suffer the most. Regional conflicts are the catylsts to increasing shortage of food and related commodities. About 77% of the world population live in Asia and Africa, the remaining 23% in the rest of the three continents. Climate change makes it contribution by bringing down the yield. Nearly, 21% of people in the African continent is living in hunger. Around 55% of the undernourshied population is from Asia.

The pandemic has already shaken the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development to its very core and, as it continues, the full effect on the progress towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is still to be determined.

FAO of the United Nations

The FAO Food Price Index (FFPI) is a measure of the monthly change in international prices of a basket of food commodities.  FFPI was introduced in 1996 by Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations to help in monitoring developments in the global agricultural commodity markets. The FFPI averaged 159.3 points in March 2022, up by 17.9 points (12.6 percent) from February, making a giant leap to a new highest level since its inception. The latest increase reflects new all-time highs for vegetable oils, cereals and meat sub-indices, while those of sugar and dairy products also rose significantly.

The FFPI is calculated as the trade-weighted average of the prices of food commodities spanning the key agricultural markets for cereals, vegetable oils, sugar, meat and dairy products.The Cereal Price Index averaged 170.1 points in March, up 24.9 points (17.1 percent) from February, marking its highest level on record since 1990, mainly due to War in Ukraine.

In 2020, a study by FAO states that the global population grew by 34 percent from 1996 to 2020, global net agricultural production increased by almost 70 percent as measured in constant value terms.

The volume of commodity trade in cereals, vegetable oils, sugar, meats and dairy products increased by 66 , 240, 220, 130, and 190 percent, respectively, over the same period. Prices of food commodities traded in international markets as measured by the FFPI have risen relative to unit prices of traded manufactured goods (measured by the World Bank’s manufactures unit value index, or MUV) by about 10 percent since 1996

In it’s quarterly report in March 2022 titled “Crop Prospects and Food Situation”, FAO mentions that India along with European Union is a major contributor to the increase in production of Maize.

India is the second largest producer of rice and wheat after China. Russia is the third largest producer of wheat. FAO has identified around 47 Low-Income Food-Deficit Countries (LIFDCs). Brazil is the largest producer of sugarcane, followed by India. Ukraine is the third largest producer of potatoes, after China and India.

The world is at a critical juncture

The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2021

World population by 2030 is projected to cross 8.5 billion i.e. 850 crores. According to water.org nearly 771 million people lack access to safe water. Researchers for the last three decades have contributed immensley in understanding the causes and possible solutions. But withstanding both man made and natural disasters divert the world attention from the achieving the goals that mankind had set for itself. Let’s hope for a better world. Let’s hope for a hunger free world. Let’s act .

3 thoughts on “Food Price Index takes a “giant leap” to all time high : FAO”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

error: Content is protected !!