In the first half of 2018, the food price index saw monthly YOY averaging -0.3 percent. The decline in food prices has accelerated since, and the monthly YOY decline now averages -2.8 percent from January through October. The reduction has accelerated: down 1.5 percent in June after three months of gains, down more than 5 percent in July and August, and down more than 7 percent in September and October.

Percentage losses have been steepest for the oils and sugar indexes, down more than 12 and 22 percent, respectively, for 2018 to date. The sugar index, in fact, has seen 18 straight months of YOY reductions even though it did see gains in September vs. August and in October vs. September.

The organization noted that though the sugar and cereals indexes did exhibit a recovery in October, these were offset by oils, dairy, and meat prices.

Select FAO price indexes annual history

Source: FAO, McKeany-Flavell
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