OECD-FAO Agricultural Outlook 2013

image of OECD-FAO Agricultural Outlook 2013

The nineteenth edition of the Agricultural Outlook, and the ninth prepared jointly with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), provides projections to 2022 for major agricultural commodities, biofuels and fish. Notable in the 2013 report is the inclusion of cotton for the first time and a special feature on China.

Higher costs and strong demand are expected to keep commodity prices well above historical averages with a high risk of price volatility given tight stocks, a changeable policy environment and increasing weather-related production risks. China is projected to maintain its self-sufficiency in certain key food commodities while increasing its trade and integration in world agricultural markets.

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Driven by robust growth in import demand from developing countries, international dairy prices rose strongly through 2010 and into the first half of 2011, peaking at levels close to those of the 2007/08 commodity boom. High returns and excellent pasture conditions in Oceania, and parts of South America, generated a supply response triggering a fall in prices. This decline in prices continued through to the second half of 2012. It was accompanied by an expansion in export volumes. With demand continuing to expand, especially from China, prices bottomed out at levels much higher than during the previous downturn in 2009. The 2012 droughts in the United States and the Russian Federation drove up grain prices, lead to lower dairy output growth in the United States and the European Union, and higher dairy prices. In early 2013, the recovery in prices intensified as reports of much drier weather conditions in Oceania began to impact market expectations of product availability. While the short term supply situation is tight, it is expected to ease over the medium term assuming normal weather conditions, keeping prices below the elevated levels of 2011.

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