Global rice prices have risen to a new 15-year high due to strong demand and lingering supply problems.
Bloomberg reports this, Ukrinform reports.
Thai 5% white rice, the Asian benchmark, rose for a third straight week to hit $659 a tonne on Wednesday, Dec. 27, according to the Thailand Rice Exporters Association.
That's the highest since October 2008, and prices are up about 38% this year after top rice supplier India curbed exports and dry weather threatened production.
Rice is a vital staple food for people in Asia and Africa, and the latest price rise could add to inflationary pressures and increase buyers' import costs. Some countries have begun increasing rice purchases to build up sufficient supplies due to concerns that the impact of El Niño will further reduce supplies in the coming months.
As Ukrinform reported, in October 2023, the world food price index decreased by 0.5% compared to September. The price index for dairy products was the only one to increase by 2.2%.
In September this year, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization reported that global rice prices had risen to their highest level in 15 years.