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UN: Food Prices Likely To Remain Volatile, High

A World Food Program worker walks past bags of relief food at a distribution center at a refugee camp near the Kenyan-Somali border.
The United Nations' food agencies said today in a report that prices for rice, wheat, and other key foods are expected to remain volatile and possibly increase -- particularly hitting poor farmers and consumers in Africa.

The report was produced by the Rome-based UN Food and Agriculture Organization, the World Food Program, and the UN's International Fund for Agriculture Development.

It urged governments to fulfill pledges to share information about farm forecasts and food stock levels to avoid the abrupt price increases that resulted in food riots in 2006-2008.

They also called for more long-term investment in the agriculture of poor countries.

A recent UN study predicted that prices will be 20 percent higher for cereals and up to 30 percent higher for meat in the coming decade compared with the past 10 years.

compiled from agency reports