You are currently viewing Spiking grain prices prompt fresh warning: ‘Food inflation is still going strong’

The price of grains are up almost 20%, according to data from Refinitiv Agriculture Research. Corn and wheat production losses, as evidenced by record low vegetation density across the European production region – known as NDVIs – reached 13 and 7 million tons respectively, the ag data and research provider revealed.

The trend is the consequence of this summer’s high temperatures – when the mercury was up to 17% higher than a normal summer in the hottest regions of the WU. “The corn price increase [has been] caused by the summer heatwave and production losses. French corn export prices increased by near 20% from August to October due to less corn available for exports and it is one of the major supplies of UK corn imports,”​ Thomas Walsh, Director of Agriculture and Weather Research at Refinitiv, told FoodNavigator.

Ingredient expert Eurostar Commodities noted this upward pressure can also be seen in commodities like long grain rice. The group is forecasting tighter supplies and price increases of 29%.

Again, ‘severe drought’ is to blame, contributing to supply-side constraints. In some areas, Eurostar Commodities observed, the availability of water ‘was not sufficient enough to allow the growing of rice at all’. In Spain, the volume of the long grain rice crop is expected to drop significantly – by as much as 70% – while in Portugal conditions are less extreme, but a decrease of between 10-20% in harvest is anticipated. This is pushing prices on the global market higher still. Prices in the Far East continue to rise with the growing demand for large quantities of long grain rice from Europe. With this severe lack of availability, prices will increase by 29%, Eurostar predicted.