World food import bill to reach record high in 2021 

By the end of 2021, the global food import bill should exceed $1.75 trillion, an increase of 14 percent over the previous year and 12 percent higher than the previous forecast.

According to FAOIs newFood OutlookThe food trade has shown “remarkable resilience” to disruptions during the pandemic, but rapidly rising prices pose significant challenges for poor countries and consumers.

rising costs

The growth is driven by higher price levels of internationally traded food items and a three-fold increase in freight costs.

Developing regions contribute 40 per cent of the total and their food import bill is expected to increase by 20 per cent over the previous year. Even faster growth is expected for countries with low-income food deficits (LIFDC,

In terms of products, developing regions are facing a sharp increase in basic staples such as cereals, animal fats, vegetable oils and oilseeds.

In developed regions, while high-value foods, such as fruits and vegetables, fish products and beverages, are becoming the main drivers of growth.


World production prospects for the major cereals remain strong, with record harvests expected for maize and rice. Grain for consumption, and animal feed, must grow even more rapidly.

The forecast expects some improvement in supply conditions for oilseeds and derivatives, but their end-season stocks may remain below average.

World sugar production should resume after three years of contraction, but still be below global consumption levels. Overall, trade is likely to decline marginally due to lower supplies and rising prices in important exporting countries.

The report said a rapid rebound in China, especially from pork, should lead to an expansion of meat production. A slowdown in trade growth is likely due to a fall in major importing regions, mostly Asia and Europe.

Milk production is projected to increase with projected growth in all major producing regions led by Asia and North America. Despite the slowdown in import growth in the past few months, global trade should also pick up.

Families in 53 countries spend more than 60 percent of their income on necessities such as food, fuel, water and housing.

Finally, fisheries and aquaculture production is expected to increase by 2 percent. For the FAO, it shows that the new market dynamics resulting from the pandemic is likely to be tolerated. Despite high freight costs and logistics delays, the fish trade is also bouncing back

Special Chapter on Agricultural Input Prices

To examine the effects of rising input costs on food prices, FAO experts created a new tool called the Global Input Price Index (GIPI).

As per the report, the new GIPI has moved synchronously with the Food Price Index.ffpi) since 2005, which means that higher input costs translate into higher food prices.

This year, till August, FFPI grew by 34 per cent and GIPI by 25 per cent.

The report also said that sectors and sectors are affected differently.

Soybean producers, for example, have low demand for expensive nitrogen fertilizer, so they must benefit from higher product prices. Pig producers, on the other hand, face higher feed costs and lower meat prices, reducing their margins.

The analysis also points to a growing number of countries, Currently 53, where households spend more than 60 per cent of their income on necessities like food, fuel, water and housing.

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