World cereal production projected to reach record high in 2023/24: FAO

Business Sunday 09/July/2023 07:27 AM
World cereal production projected to reach record high in 2023/24: FAO

Rome: World cereal production is predicted to hit a record high in 2023/24, according to the latest Cereal Supply and Demand Brief, released by the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO).

FAO raised its 2023 global cereal production forecast to 2 819 million tonnes, indicating a 1.1 per cent increase from the previous year. The higher forecast almost entirely reflects better prospects for global wheat production, now pegged at 783.3 million tonnes, buoyed by improved outlooks in several countries, including Canada, Kazakhstan and Turkiye. However, global wheat production is still seen falling below last season's output by 2.3 per cent,

Global coarse grain output for the year is now forecast to grow by 2.9 per cent from 2022 to 1 512 million tonnes. Likewise, world rice production in 2023/24 is expected to rise by 1.2 per cent above the 2022/23 reduced level, to 523.7 million tonnes.

World cereal utilisation in the season ahead is expected to expand by 0.9 per cent to 2 805 million tonnes, led by expected increased use of coarse grains, especially of maize for animal feed.

FAO raised its forecast for world cereal stocks by the close of 2023/24 seasons to 878 million tonnes, some 2.3 per cent higher from the previous season. At this level, the global cereal stocks-to-use ratio would remain unchanged at 30.6 per cent, "indicating comfortable supply prospects in the new season."

FAO's latest forecast for world trade in cereals in 2023/24 points to a likely 0.9-percent contraction from 2022/23, with volumes of wheat seen declining from record levels.
High food prices worsen food situation in vulnerable countries.

High food prices, economic downturns, conflict, droughts and the impending risk of El Nino weather patterns in several regions are aggravating food security concerns in many parts of the world. A total of 45 countries around the world are assessed to need external assistance for food, according to the latest Crop Prospects and Food Situation report, a quarterly publication by FAO's Global Information and Early Warning System (GIEWS), also published.

High domestic food prices, a measure divergent from the FAO Food Price Index, are a driver of worrying levels of hunger in most of the 45 countries, 33 of which are located in Africa, 9 in Asia, and also Haiti, Ukraine and Venezuela.
While world cereal production is forecast to expand by 1.1 per cent in 2023 from the year before, it is predicted to contract in the group of 44 Low-Income Food Deficit Countries (LIFDCs), pushing up import needs, the report said.

The quarterly report offers detailed information about food insecurity and price trends people face on the ground in the affected countries. It also provides a detailed assessment of regional production and trade prospects around the world.