Markets & Trade


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Regional Supply and Market Outlook Reports

Southern Africa | August 2016

Central America | April 2016

West Africa | December 2015


Key Messages from the December 2016 Global Price Watch (reporting on November 2016 prices):

  • In West Africa, regional staple food production during the 2016/17 marketing year is expected to be well above average. Staple food prices declined and remained near average as supplies increased in November with the arrival of recent harvests and continued international rice and wheat imports. Persistent depreciation of the Naira (NGN) has led to price increases across Nigeria, especially for rice, and reduced purchasing power for Sahelian livestock and cash crops.

  • In East Africa, staple food prices declined seasonally as supplies increased from ongoing harvests, except in Uganda and Somalia where recent harvests were below-average, resulting in atypical price increases. Somalia’s January 2017 (Deyr) harvest is also expected to be below average. Prices remain above average across the region, especially in South Sudan and Somalia. In Yemen, the availability of adequate food supplies past January is uncertain as the Central Bank of Yemen stopped issuing credit to importers due to lack of foreign currency. Insecurity also continues to disrupt markets in Yemen.

  • In Southern Africa, regional maize availability is well below-average during the 2016/17 marketing year following consecutive years of below average production. Imports by South Africa and Zimbabwe from well-supplied international markets have offset a portion of the regional deficit. Market supplies declined in November with the progression of the lean season. Maize prices are above their respective 2015 and five-year average levels region wide. While prices remain high and variable in Mozambique, security conditions have improved along key marketing corridors, facilitating trade. 

  • In Central America, maize and bean availability increased with supplies from the extended Primera harvest and the start of the Postrera harvest across the region. Maize prices seasonally declined or were stable, while bean prices were mixed. Markets in southwestern Haiti continued to recover from damages by Hurricane Mathew. Locally-produced bean and maize prices increased as supplies remained limited, while imported commodity prices and availability remained stable.

  • In Central Asia, average regional harvests and above-average stocks sustained adequate supplies. Prices were below 2015 levels in Kazakhstan, above-average in Tajikistan, and near average in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

  • International staple food markets are well supplied. Regional price indices reflect high prices in East Africa. Rice and maize prices fell, soybean prices increased, and wheat price trends were mixed. Crude oil prices remained well below-average.

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

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 35 countries. Implementing team members include NASA, NOAA, USDA, and USGS, along with Chemonics International Inc. and Kimetrica. Read more about our work.