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Country Briefs

  Peru

Reference Date: 13-December-2016

FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT

  1. Cereal production in 2016 estimated at high level

  2. Cereal imports in 2016/17 marketing year forecast at record level

  3. Cereal prices stable in October, but remained higher than year earlier

Cereal production in 2016 estimated at high level

Cereal production in Peru occurs on a continuous basis, with harvesting taking place across the country at different times in the calendar year. Cereal production in 2016 is forecast slightly below last year’s bumper level but close to 5.2 million tonnes, still well above the five-year average. The decline mainly reflects a lower maize output due to lower yields during the first half of the year. Maize production in 2016 is estimated at 1.5 million tonnes or 14 percent below last year’s record level but still above the five‑year average. Maize yields and the area harvested were affected at the beginning of the year by the El Niño phenomenon. By contrast, rice production is estimated at a bumper level of 3.2 million tonnes (paddy equivalent) as improved weather conditions with the dissipation of El Niño in June, coupled with strong local prices, lifted output to all-time highs.

Planting of the 2017 maize crops is well advanced, early official estimates point to an increase of almost 6 percent in sowings, mainly reflecting the prevailing high prices. However, this forecast remains highly uncertain as severe dry weather continues to affect the western coast of Peru. On 8 December, the Ministry of Agriculture declared a state of water emergency in 17 of the country’s 25 regions for 60 days with a possibility of extension depending on how rainfall levels progress. The Government has initially allocated some USD 17.5 million to respond to the state of emergency.

Cereal imports in 2016/17 marketing year forecast at record level

Cereal imports in the 2016/17 marketing year (January/December) are forecast at a record level of 4.6 million tonnes. This mainly follows higher imports of maize, due to a strong demand from the feed industry and this year’s decline in output.

Cereal prices stable in October, but remained higher than year earlier

Adequate volumes of imports continued to keep yellow maize prices relatively stable in October although they were still higher than the corresponding month last year due to the reduced 2016 harvests. Prices of rice were also relatively unchanged in October and only slightly above last year’s level, reflecting high local demand.