Global food prices reached a 10-year high in 2021, rising by an average of 28 percent compared to the previous year, the UN's Food and Agricultural Organization said Thursday.
The FAO's Food Price Index, which tracks monthly changes in the international prices of commonly-traded food commodities, dipped slightly in December.
However, at 133.7 points, it remained close to the record of 137.6 points it set in February 2011. The index stood at 125.7 points for the year as a whole, also the highest in a decade.
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"While normally high prices are expected to give way to increased production, the high cost of inputs, ongoing global pandemic and ever more uncertain climatic conditions leave little room for optimism about a return to more stable market conditions even in 2022," FAO Senior Economist Abdolreza Abbassian said in a statement.
Prices in all food categories jumped last year due to strong demand, he said.
Food oils saw an average price jump of 66 percent last year to hit their highest ever level.
Grain prices rose by 27 percent, hitting a level not seen since 2012, with corn prices soaring 44.1 percent and wheat rising 31.3 percent.
Meat prices rose by an average of 12.7 percent in 2021, and dairy products by 16.9 percent.