Food Prices Projected To Rise Over Next Decade, FAO/OECD Report Says

Food prices are likely to continue to rise over the next decade, “putting the poor at an increasing risk of malnutrition and hunger,” according to a joint report (.pdf) from the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the Associated Press/Washington Post reports (6/17).

The report “says that a good harvest in the coming months should push commodity prices down from the extreme levels seen earlier this year,” an FAO press release notes. According to projections, prices for cereals over the next decade could average up to 20 percent higher and meat prices could be up to 30 percent higher compared with 2001-10. “These projections are well below the peak price levels experienced in 2007-08 and again this year,” the release states.

“The report suggests, among other things, that G20 countries take steps to boost agricultural productivity in developing countries, reduce or eliminate trade-distorting policies and establish a new mechanism to improve information and transparency on agricultural production, consumption, stocks and trade,” the release states (6/17).

Meanwhile on Thursday, Davida Nabarro, the U.N. special representative on food security and nutrition, warned about the potential for price spikes like those in 2008, which resulted in deadly riots on three continents, the Associated Press reports. “Anybody who thinks that 2008 represented some kind of peak is dreaming,” Nabarro said in an interview with the AP (Casert, 6/16).