Markets and Trade

Price volatility in agricultural markets

Price fluctuations are a common feature of well-functioning agricultural product markets. But when these become large and unexpected – or volatile – they can negatively impact the food security of consumers, farmers, and entire countries. Since 2007, world markets have seen a series of dramatic fluctuations in commodity prices. Food prices reached their highest levels for 30 years during the summer of 2008, collapsing the following winter, before rapidly rising again in the months that followed.

FAO’s Food Prices Monitoring Analysis (FPMA) provides early warning on high food prices at the country level that may negatively affect a country’s food security. In light of Covid-19, FPMA monitored the consumer prices of 14 food products in all countries, with updated percentage price changes.

The crosscutting work undertaken under this research area feeds into the writing of The State of Agricultural Commodity Markets report (SOCO), which is part of FAO’s flagship publication series.

Digital Tools


Food Price Monitoring and Analysis


Agricultural Market Information System