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October 2021 Global Price Watch

  • Price Watch
  • Global
  • October 29, 2021
October 2021 Global Price Watch

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  • Key Messages
  • Key Messages
    • In West Africa, staple food supplies increased with the beginning of the 2021/2022 rainfed harvest season. However, supply remained below the five-year average across much of the region. Despite decreasing seasonally as households started to consume from their own production, market demand remained above average due to increased replenishment of stocks and below-average trade flows. Although prices decreased compared to the previous month, staple food prices remained above the five-year average, especially in Nigeria. Conflict-related market disruptions persisted across parts of Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger, Nigeria, Chad, and Cameroon. 

    • In East Africa, prices continued seasonal but divergent trends. Maize prices were stable or declined in Kenya, South Sudan, and Ethiopia due to ongoing or imminent harvests. In Uganda, Tanzania, and Somalia, maize prices were stable due to sufficient supply from recent May-to-August harvests. Sorghum prices increased seasonably in Somalia and Uganda as stocks tightened, while prices decreased in South Sudan and Sudan as sales increased ahead of the October-to-December harvest. Livestock prices increased across most pastoral markets due to good rangeland conditions and high demand. High inflation and expectations of below-average harvests sustained elevated prices in Kenya, Uganda, Somalia, Ethiopia, South Sudan, and Sudan.

    • In Southern Africa, markets and the milling subsector are well-supplied with maize following above-average production during the 2020/21 production year, except in Madagascar, where supply was below average. Price trends followed seasonal stable or increasing trends in September. Prices remained lowest in Malawi and South Africa. South Africa continued to export yellow maize to international markets and white maize to regional markets. While firm international commodity prices supported regional export earnings, many regional currencies continued to depreciate. 

    • In Central America, markets were well supplied and operating normally. Maize prices declined following primera harvests in Guatemala and increased seasonally elsewhere in the region. Local bean prices were stable except in El Salvador where prices increased. Imported rice prices were similarly stable. In Haiti, local maize and black bean prices declined following spring harvests. Imported rice prices were stable while other imported staples continued to experience depreciation-induced price increases. Insecurity disrupted commercial activities and fuel distribution in Port au Prince. 

    • In Central Asia, wheat price trends varied. Wheat prices in Kazakhstan and Pakistan tracked international reference market trends, increasing further in September. After increasing July and September, prices were stable across many markets in Afghanistan. In Yemen, prices remained above average due to protracted conflict and persistent depreciation of the YER. Price trends differed significantly between internationally recognized government (IRG) and Sana’a-based authorities (SBA) controlled areas.

    • International staple food markets are well supplied. Rice and maize prices have declined since the beginning of the year, while wheat prices have continued rising at elevated levels. Global crude oil and fertilizer prices and freight costs are currently at the highest levels in the past five years. 

    Price Watch offers a monthly summary and outlook on global, regional and national trends of key commodity prices in FEWS NET countries. Analysis may touch on global issues, such as fuel prices or exchange rates, if they are likely to influence staple food prices in FEWS NET countries. The accompanying Price Watch Annex details price trends by country.

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