According to a recent report by Rabobank, reductions in the price of cereals in 2012 are anticipated.
A weakening of the highs of 2011 in grain prices is anticipated, but is unlikely to reach the levels of 2008/09, which could stabilize inflation in food prices for next year.
Rabobank's report, however, stressed that agricultural markets are in a "long-term upward trend" as incomes rise and diets change in emerging markets. Even an economic slowdown would affect prices only slightly.
Supplies of various agricultural commodities are expected to increase and could lead to lower prices in 2012, but a collapse in prices is not expected due to continued demand and a modest increase in stocks.
Here are some of the price forecasts of several products in 2012, compared to 2011:
• Corn: Prices are expected to be lower than in 2011, but still high. Some reduction in prices in the fourth quarter is expected as a result of an abundant harvest.
• Soy: Slightly lower prices are expected in 2012, but prices will remain historically high.
• Wheat: forecasting the world's second largest crop recorded in 2011/12 will remove tension in the market, while coarse grains for feed manufacture continue to maintain prices.
• Pork: A downward trend in the American market in 2012 is expected and pig producers have increased production to meet market demand, the growth of imports from China will be slower.
December 2011/ Outlook 2012- Down, but not out. Agri Commodity Market research /Rabobank/ Netherlands.