Bangkok, Thailand, 08 May 2014 -- In its first major forecast for 2014, cereal production is estimated at 2,458 million tonnes (including milled rice), down by 60 million metric tonnes, or some 2.4 percent, from the 2013 record, the FAO’s biannual Food Outlook reports today.
This plunge has been attributed to a 1.9 percent decline in wheat production and a drop of 3.9 percent in coarse grains.
“What we are seeing is a tightening of the supply/demand balance, resulting in price increases,” said Hiroyuki Konuma, Assistant Director-General and Regional Representative for Asia and the Pacific. “The reduction in supply is due to a variety of factors, among them drought which has affected the planting seasons in some countries.”
“The decline in production of wheat and coarse grains is projected to result in a global price increase, with nearly 15 to 17 percent increase since January 2014,” Konuma said.
Konuma made the comments to correspondents and journalists from the Asia-Pacific region at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Thailand during FAO’s monthly media briefing.
The report anticipates much of the reduction in output of wheat to be concentrated in Canada, but smaller harvests are also expected in Australia, Morocco, the Syrian Arab Republic, the Russian Federation, Ukraine and the United States, which would more than offset larger outputs in Argentina, Brazil, India, Mexico and Pakistan