Meat Price Index bucks the trend

09 May 2017

International meat quotations defied the downward trend followed by all other commodity indices in the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) Food Price Index* in April.

The FAO Meat Price Index has continued to move higher since the start of the year – amounting to an almost 5% increase from January to April. In April, the Index averaged 166.6 points – up 2.8 points (or 1.7%) from the March value.

Ovine and pigmeat quotations drove the rise in the Index for the month. Pig meat prices were stimulated by strong domestic demand in the EU, as well as growth in sales to China and Korea. Ovine quotations were supported by a seasonal demand peak over the Easter period, while bovine and poultry prices were relatively stable.

Despite the lift in the Meat Price Index, a decline across all other commodity indices pulled the overall FAO Food Price Index into its third consecutive month of decline. The Food Price Index in April fell 3.1 points (1.8%) from the previous month, to average 168 points.

Sugar prices, in particular, were down in April due to continued weak global import demand and the anticipation of larger export supplies from Brazil. This caused the Sugar Price Index to hit a 12-month low, of 233.3 points – down 23.3 points (9.1%) month-on-month.


*The FAO Food Price Index is a measure of the monthly change in international prices of a basket of food commodities. It consists of the average of five commodity group price indices, weighted with the average export shares of each of the groups for 2002-2004 (Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations). 

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