World food prices edged lower by 1% in June, as drops in sugar, cereals and dairy were more than enough to offset a rise in meat prices, according to the United Nations (UN). The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) reports that the food price index, which measures monthly price changes in cereals, dairy, meat, sugar and oilseeds, averaged 211.3, compared to 213.2 in May.
The FAO says the dairy price index fell 10.8 points, or 4.3%, to 239 in June after an abrupt fall in production in New Zealand and supplies being outsourced to other countries, including the U.S. Sugar prices dropped 3% to 242.6 amid a large global surplus, its third straight monthly drop. Cereals, including corn, rice and wheat, fell 1% to 236.5 points.
The U.S. Agriculture Department (USDA) has forecast food prices in the United States to rise between 2.5 and 3.5% this year.