World food prices rose in October after falling in each of the previous five months, pushed by higher sugar prices, the United Nations Food and Agriculture organization said, also predicting that prices would remain stable going forward, local media said Friday.
Overall, FAO's World Food Price Index rose to 206 points, a 1.3 percent rise compared to the previous month. It was the first monthly rise in the index since April.
Prices were flat or higher in all of the five key commodity groups the index uses, but it was sugar prices, which rose 7.4 percent compared to September. It was the third consecutive monthly rise for sugar, which was scarce due to unfavorable weather conditions in Brazil, the world's leading sugar producer.
Among other areas, small rises in rice, wheat, and corn prices pushed the grains and cereals index up 1 percent, while oils rose 2 percent, and dairy prices increase 0.4 percent.
Only meat prices were unchanged from the previous month, as decreases for poultry and pig meat helped offset rises in other meat categories.
So far, 2013 has seen the most stable food prices in at least five years, following an unusual volatile year for food prices in 2012.
In a separate report, FAO's Food Outlook, the organization said that improved supply chains, more market transparency, and full inventories of grains and cereals have contributed to the recent stability and would continue to do so in the near term.
"We have the expectation that in the current season we will have more abundant supplies, more export availabilities, and higher food stocks," David Hallam, director of FAO's trade and markets division said in a statement.
The next installment of the FAO World Food Price Index will be released on Dec. 5.