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Regional Supply and Market Outlook Reports

Central America | April 2017

West Africa | April 2017

East Africa | March 2017


Key Messages from the September 2017 Global Price Watch (reporting on August 2017 prices):

  • In West Africa, regional staple food production during the 2016/17 marketing year was well above average. International rice and wheat imports along with institutional subsidized sales continue to support market supplies. Prices stabilized or began declining after reaching their highest levels of the marketing year in July. Pastoral conditions improved, due to adequate pasture and water availability. Current market anomalies remain concentrated in the eastern marketing basin, including but not limited to: conflict-related market disruptions in the Lake Chad basin, localized above-average grain deficits in Niger, trade disruptions related to the depreciation of the Naira and various government measures.

  • In East Africa, maize supplies are generally below-average, causing above-average prices across most of the region. Staple food price levels are especially high in South Sudan. Markets remain severely disrupted by insecurity and significant macro-economic issues in Yemen and South Sudan, impeding staple food supply access. Harvests are ongoing in Somalia, Tanzania and Uganda, and are about to begin in Kenya. Supplies are seasonally low in Ethiopia and Sudan as the lean season progresses.

  • In Southern Africa, maize availability is average to above average following recent regional harvests. Regional maize production estimates for the 2016/17 season are good, with record-high harvests anticipated in South Africa. After reaching very high levels in 2016, maize prices followed seasonal trends in August and are at or below their respective 2016 and average levels many areas. Maize grain is generally able to circulate between surplus and deficit areas without major trade restrictions. Export parity prices are competitive and exports, encouraging exports to East Africa (from Zambia, South Africa, and Malawi) and International markets (from South Africa).

  • In Central America, markets remained well supplied as the main maize harvest (Primera season) began and imports continued supporting local availability. Maize and bean prices were generally seasonally stable or decreasing, except in Nicaragua where the season is slightly delayed. Staple food prices remain near or below average levels across the region. In Haiti, local maize and bean prices continued to ease as the Printemps harvest draws to an end under generally favorable conditions. Imported rice prices were stable while the Haitian gourde maintained relative stability against the USD.  

  • Central Asia sustained adequate supplies. Wheat prices generally remained stable in the region. Production forecasts remain largely unchanged from last month. Harvest in Tajikistan will be slightly above last year’s level, similar to last year’s level in Pakistan, and slightly below last year’s level in Kazakhstan and Afghanistan.

  • International staple food markets remain well supplied. Rice, maize, wheat and soybean prices fell. Crude oil prices rose but continue to remain well below average levels.

Markets & Trade Products

Price Watch

About Price Watch

Price Watch offers a monthly summary and outlook on global, regional and national trends of key commodity prices in FEWS NET countries. Analysis may touch on global issues, such as fuel prices or exchange rates, if they are likely to influence staple food prices in FEWS NET countries. The accompanying Price Watch Annex details price trends by country.

Price Bulletins

About Price Bulletin

Price Bulletins are produced monthly and available by country. They provide graphs tracking the prices of commodities that are important locally.

Cross Border Trade Reports

About Cross Border Trade Reports

Cross Border Trade Reports are periodic documents on trade from country to country or in a region, usually addressing the exchange of food commodities at selected border points.

Production and Market Flow Maps

About Production and Trade Flow Maps

Production and Trade Flow Maps capture the market networks for a product in a given country or region, including their catchments and trade flow patterns. These maps are available for key products in most FEWS NET countries.

About Market & Trade


Markets and Trade Information
Markets and Trade Information

Markets & Trade Factsheet

Across the developing world today, huge majorities of poor people—both urban and rural—rely on markets for staple foods.

Even small holders who produce their own food may rely on markets to add diversity to their diets or to supplement their stocks during lean periods. They may also count on markets to sell crops, trade assets such as livestock, or find casual labor opportunities. The trade flows that support these markets are powerful forces, influenced by suppliers, traders, and buyers responding to changes in supply and demand, ultimately determining prices and the availability of food. 

FEWS NET conducts regular analysis of markets and trade, monitoring local staple food prices and regional trade flows as well as macroeconomic drivers. This work centers on countries where we conduct regular food security analysis, as well as selected others, such as South Africa and Kazakhstan, whose markets greatly influence those of their neighbors. For each country, FEWS NET specialists consider products of local importance, looking at major production and consumption markets. Monthly reports, known for their objectivity and accessibility, are published on this website and distributed by subscriber list.

Women buying fresh green vegetables at a West African marketIn addition, our market specialists collaborate with food security analysts to integrate assumptions on trade flows and prices into FEWS NET’s monthly early warning analysis. As warranted, the team conducts more extensive price projections using fundamentals analysis of market drivers and technical analysis of historical price data.

FEWS NET cooperates closely with a network of food, agricultural and economic entities, relying on them for expertise as well as data on prices and other economic indicators. They include: national ministries of agriculture, statistical offices and market information systems; the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO); the World Food Program (WFP); and others. In a handful of countries, FEWS NET has teams of market monitors who collect data.

Along with the regular reporting, FEWS NET also offers a series of clear, concise guidance documents to explain the basics of markets and trade analysis, assessment, and monitoring.


The Famine Early Warning Systems Network is a leading provider of early warning and analysis on food insecurity. Created by USAID in 1985 to help decision-makers plan for humanitarian crises, FEWS NET provides evidence-based analysis on some 34 countries. Implementing team members include NASA, NOAA, USDA, and USGS, along with Chemonics International Inc. and Kimetrica. Read more about our work.