World cereal production set to jump 8 percent this year

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A woman planting rice in the Kenyan community of Ahero

The outlook for global cereal supply in the 2013/14 marketing season remains generally favourable despite downward adjustments to forecasts for world cereal production and closing stocks, according to the latest issue of FAO‘s quarterly Crop Prospects and Food Situation report.

Despite this downward adjustment, world cereal production would still surpass the 2012 level by nearly eight percent.

Meanwhile, the FAO Food and Price Index dropped for the fifth month in a row in September, driven by a sharp fall in the international prices of cereals. The prices of dairy, oils, meat and sugar rose slightly.

The Index, which measures the monthly change in the international prices of a basket of 55 food commodities, averaged 199.1 points last month, 2.3 points below its August value.

The Crop Prospects and Food Situation report highlights a number of food insecurity hotspots.

Among them: In Syria, due to conflict about four million people are in need of humanitarian assistance.

In the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, an estimated 2.8 million vulnerable people require food assistance until the next harvest in October.

Despite an improved food supply situation this year in the Sahel, a large number of people are still affected by conflict and the lingering effects of the 2011/12 food crisis, notably in northern Mali.

In Central Africa, the food security situation continues to deteriorate in the Central African Republic (CAR) and in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) due to protracted civil insecurity.

Donn Bobb, United Nations.

Duration: 1’28″

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