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The world is in a far better place in terms of food supply and costs than in the recent past. This is evident in the Food and Agricultural Organisation food price index, which averaged 173.7 index points in June, down 1.3% from May and a percentage point from the same time in 2017. This was underpinned by a decline in global grain, vegetable oil and dairy product prices due to large supplies. This could remain a key theme throughout the year as the 2018-19 global agricultural production estimates continue to paint an optimistic picture. The International Grains Council forecast 2018-19 global grains production at 2.01-billion tonnes last week, just 2% lower year-on-year on lower global wheat production. It will translate into a slight dwindling of global grains stocks to 532-million tonnes. Maize, soya beans and rice are among the leading contributors to the expected large global production. The 2018-19 global maize production has been estimated at 1.05-billion tonnes, up 1% year on...

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