Resources

Apr 2021

The storage of grains has an important food security dimension. This paper reviews recent trends in grain stockholding; discusses the two main purposes for holding stocks, which are to maintain an emergency reserve and to help stabilize prices; describes the difficulties in measuring stocks, especially as regards deriving internationally comparable data; and outlines the economic importance of stocks as a determinant of international food price volatility.

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Mar 2021

The first wave of COVID-19 containment measures raised concerns about the capacity of markets to withstand the shock without generating distortions. In this analysis, researchers move beyond the aggregated effects which hide internal dynamics in the countries. Analyzing 789 retail markets in 47 low to middle income countries, the results shows that more stringent policy responses increase food prices for integrated and less remote markets but not for segmented markets. The impact of the stringency of policy responses on food prices is mediated by reductions in mobility and moderated by markets' pre-Corona dependency on trade.

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Nov 2020

The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic triggered alarmist views on whether international markets would still have the capacity to meet demands from countries who are dependent on trade, including their food security. This paper analyses whether international food markets have been holding up since the start of the pandemic and whether countries, especially those that are economically disadvantaged and dependent on food imports, have been able to meet their dietary needs through international trade.

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Sep 2020

Early in the COVID-19 outbreak, there were concerns that the health crisis would develop into a large-scale food crisis similar to the 2007-08 food price crisis, when panic buying and counterproductive policies exacerbated initial supply disruptions. While food supply chains have seen disruptions, and there are future risks that require attention, a food price crisis has been avoided so far, in part thanks to improved transparency in global staple crop markets. Transparency on market conditions and policies is critical in helping reduce market uncertainty, exposing bottlenecks and highlighting risks, all of which help market participants and policymakers develop more effective responses in times of crisis. More broadly, transparency is essential for global markets to work and provide a resilient supply of affordable food. Yet, transparency is not automatic: it requires investments in gathering comparable information, monitoring market and policy developments, and communicating clearly about the findings. This note discusses the importance of transparency, and the investments it requires, using the example of the Agriculture Market Information System (AMIS), a G20 initiative created in response to the 2007-08 food price crisis. While AMIS focuses on major staple crops (wheat, maize, rice and soybeans), experience with AMIS can provide insights for the wider agriculture and food sector.

Studies and working papers 0
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Apr 2020

FAO is analysing and providing updates on the emerging COVID-19 pandemic’s effects on agricultural markets—effects that are still largely unknown. Most current assessments generally foresee a contraction in both supply of and demand for agricultural products, and point to possible disruptions in trade and logistics.

On the supply side, widely different views remain on the duration of the shocks, the price dynamics, differential impacts between domestic and international markets, differences across countries and commodities, the likely paths of recovery, and the policy actions to remedy the various shock waves.

On the demand side, there is near ubiquitous agreement that agricultural demand and trade would slow-down, with contractions stemming from a deceleration in overall economic activity (GDP growth) and rising rates of unemployment. While food and agricultural systems are exposed to both demand and supply side shocks (symmetric), these shocks are not expected to take place in parallel (asynchronous) since, inter alia, consumers can draw on savings, food stocks and safety nets.

Studies and working papers 337668
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Jan 2020

In view of a recent update and revamp of the AMIS market database, and considering the importance of AMIS for global food price transparency, the FAO Office of Chief Statistician selected the AMIS market database for a User Consultation. Data collection took place between November and December 2019, with the final report being published in January 2020.

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Nov 2017

Food price volatility is one of the major concerns for development practitioners and policymakers worldwide. FAO’s project aimed to address this issue by improving data reliability, timeliness and frequency through capacity development activities in national institutions, as well as developing and piloting improved methodologies in three targeted countries: Bangladesh, India and Nigeria. The evaluation found that the project was appropriate and relevant, but it was limited in scope and coverage due to the small budget and short time frame. FAO’s ability to understand and work with government processes and stakeholders was one important contributing factor for the achievement of the results; however, it is essential to look beyond FAO’s traditional partners (e.g. the private sector and civil society) to achieve holistic project results.  Decentralized institutional arrangements within FAO and oversight committees in the country have proved to be vital for developing project ownership and effective implementation coordination. FAO should continue to promote the use of this committees consisting of key stakeholders for better design, coordination and ownership of projects.

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Nov 2017

This manual reaches out to both providers and users of data published by AMIS. For providers of data who regularly submit market information to AMIS, the manual describes how AMIS supply and demand balances are constructed. For users of data, the manual helps in interpreting balances published by AMIS and understanding why these might differ from balances published by other sources.

Guidelines and handbooks 337667
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Oct 2017

The Evaluation of the financial support by the World Bank Group with the Development Grant Facility to support the “Partnership for Agricultural Market Information System (AMIS)” was conducted in 2016-2017. The objectives, outcomes and activities of the DGF Partnership were relevant and aligned to the higher order goal of improving transparency of the global agriculture markets. It was recognized that not many other initiatives allow this kind of partnership and technical exchange among the member international organizations. The added value of AMIS products, as expressed by respondents, is linked to their perceptions of the reliability of the data sources and information sharing on methodologies used. The evaluation assessed that the DGF resources were used economically and the initiative also leveraged additional resources during the DGF implementation period. The DGF funding, by being well aligned with core AMIS needs and mobilized in a timely way, has been able to reach the Bank’s objective of “catalyzing partnerships through convening and building coalitions, and raising funds”. It made a direct contribution to AMIS by strengthening the Secretariat and its functions, achievements that can be maintained on the condition that other sources of funding are mobilized.

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Jul 2017

Having reliable forecasts of food production remains a major challenge in many countries. This literature review, prepared as part of an AMIS capacity building project financed by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, provides an overview of recent practices and advances in the area of crop yield forecasting at farm and parcel level. It complements an earlier study entitled "Crop Yield Forecasting: Methodological and Institutional Aspects", released in February 2016, which covered crop yield forecasting at regional and national levels.

Studies and working papers 337665
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Jun 2017

This literature review reviews all features relating to the development of an agricultural market information system, with a particular focus on information on market prices and on the use of new technologies for price data collection and dissemination. A detailed list of references is provided at the end of the document, including, where available, URLs to the resources. Readers are encouraged to refer to the original documents wherever possible: indeed, this review does not attempt a detailed summary of the documents cited, but rather seeks to emphasize the principal sources in the vast literature available. Similarly, while many of the most important market information systems are noted, this review is not intended as a compendium thereof and does not, therefore, list them comprehensively.

Studies and working papers 337663
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Mar 2017

AMIS Research Paper No. 6 aims at identifying thresholds that are associated with the transition between different levels of price volatility. To this end, the study surveys a host of factors related to price dynamics of food crops, and tries to isolate relevant determinants of volatility transition and to discover their change points using a statistical estimation and variable selection algorithm termed component-wise gradient boosting.

Studies and working papers 360252
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Mar 2017

This is a non-technical summary of AMIS Research Paper No. 6, which analyses thresholds associated with transitions between different levels of price volatility. 

Studies and working papers 360252
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Mar 2017

Reliable data on grain stocks help decision makers understand food availability, plan the necessary interventions on market stabilization, and address issues related to food insecurity. These Guidelines support statisticians and managers of national statistics offices in developing or improving stock surveys. They provide practical tools for direct measurement of food stocks; discuss current and best practices for stock estimation through sample surveys; reflect on conceptual, technical, human and budgetary issues related to stock surveys; and provide examples and tools for countries wishing to develop their stock survey programmes. The document was produced as part of an AMIS capacity building project funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Guidelines and handbooks 337666
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Mar 2016

One of the original goals of the Agricultural Market Information System (AMIS) was to develop a set of early warning global market indicators which could alert AMIS members to detect market conditions that could lead to excessive price volatility. Early meetings of AMIS in 2011 and 2012 considered a variety of measures. This report summarizes the results of a technical workshop that was held in November 2015 to consider several global market indicators which could be potentially incorporated into the AMIS Market Monitor.

Studies and working papers 360252
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Feb 2016

Forecasting crop production is an important dimension when monitoring agricultural markets. Over time, forecasting techniques have evolved, as has agriculture itself and the specifications of the forecasts that are needed. Those who use forecasts seek greater accuracy, granularity, comparability, and timeliness; those who produce the data frequently face financial and technical constraints. Obtaining timely knowledge presents a very real challenge.

The human, institutional, technical and financial infrastructure needed to produce crop forecasts is complex. This publication provides insights into these complexities, highlighting good practices from selected country case studies and outlining prospects for the future. By describing the functioning of diverse institutional set-ups this publication will hopefully help improve national systems to produce high-quality forecasts for efficient policy design and market operation.

Studies and working papers BEL,CHN,MAR,ZAF,USA 337665
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Sep 2015

This presentation explains the logic behind some of the technical charts that are published in the AMIS Market Monitor. Specifically, it describes the Commitments of Traders charts that visualize the volume of futures purchases and sales of the three main trader categories: commercials, managed money, and swaps dealers. This information provides important insights to analyze price trends in agricultural commodities markets.

 

Presentations 360252
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Jun 2015

AMIS Secretary, Mr. Abdolreza Abbassian, presented the "World Grain Market Situation and Outlook - An AMIS Perspective" at this year's IGC Grains Conference in London, 9 June 2015. Questions discussed at the conference included:

  • What is the impact of a strong US dollar, low oil prices and export curbs?
  • What are the prospects for production and trade in the Black Sea region?
  • How will the industry be impacted by climate change and address increasingly scarce water resources?
  • What is the outlook for supply and demand, trade and prices for 2015/16?
Presentations 0
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Oct 2014

At the fourth Session of the AMIS Global Food Market Information Group, which was held in Rome in October 2013, the Group requested the AMIS Secretariat to undertake a closer examination of agricultural price transmission from futures benchmarks to farm-gate. That request provided the genesis for this paper.

Although price transmission is the subject of much academic research in the United States, elsewhere it is little studied. In fact, the basic questions about how prices diffuse from global markets to the farm among the major agricultural producers have gone largely unasked. Such questions include: How do prices get relayed from the CME benchmarks to the farming oblasts in Ukraine or to the Brazilian producers of Mato Grosso? Which components along the supply chain facilitate price transmission and which impede them? How relevant are futures market prices – whether global or regional - to producer price realization? And finally, given that commodity prices are so globalized, why do producers in some farming regions thrive and enjoy high price realization whereas others seem bound to a persistent low level of income? Using a qualitative approach, the paper attempts to answer these questions.

Studies and working papers ARG,BRA,CHN,ZAF,UKR,USA 337668
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Sep 2014

Feed use accounts for about a third of world consumption of cereals. Despite its significance, feed utilization is a largely unknown component in supply and demand balances. Within the framework of a global scoping report conducted for the Agricultural Market Information System (AMIS), this paper reviews feed consumption patterns and methods for estimating feed use in Thailand.

Studies and working papers THA 337667
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Sep 2014

Feed use accounts for about a third of world consumption of cereals. Despite its significance, feed utilization is a largely unknown component in supply and demand balances. Within the framework of a global scoping report conducted for the Agricultural Market Information System (AMIS), this paper reviews feed consumption patterns and methods for estimating feed use in Vietnam.

Studies and working papers VNM 337667
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Sep 2014

Feed use accounts for about a third of world consumption of cereals. Despite its significance, feed utilization is a largely unknown component in supply and demand balances. Within the framework of a global scoping report conducted for the Agricultural Market Information System (AMIS), this paper reviews feed consumption patterns and methods for estimating feed use in the Philippines.

Studies and working papers PHL 337667
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May 2014

In May 2014, several inception and assessment missions were organised in Abuja, Kaduna and Zaria to identify and prioritize AMIS’ support to Nigeria.

Different meetings were organized with key stakeholders involved in three AMIS’ statistics domains in Abuja, Kaduna and Niger States. Desk reviews, interviews and bilateral discussions were also undertaken so as to ensure a comprehensive approach for the Nigeria data assessment exercise. This report provides information related to data availability and quality on the following AMIS crops: maize, rice, soybean and wheat.  

 

 

Studies and working papers NGA 337663
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Apr 2014

Feed use accounts for about a third of world consumption of cereals. Despite its significance, feed utilization is a largely unknown component in supply and demand balances. AMIS Research Paper No. 3 summarizes current knowledge on feed utilization by reviewing feed consumption patterns in several countries and methods for estimating feed use.

In the developed countries, feed use data is typically calculated using the “supply” (or balance sheet) approach. Documenting all the key elements within a balance sheet allows the calculation of feed use as a residual. This method of calculation has many advantages, but assumes that appropriate surveys can be undertaken in order to accurately estimate production, other uses and, most difficult of all, the level of carryover stocks. When the implementation of such surveys is not possible for national authorities, due to logistical or other constraints, then the “demand” approach provides an alternative solution: calculating how much feed animals actually require. As illustrated in this report, the success of this approach is largely conditioned on the availability of reliable information about the livestock sector, including the type of animal and animal numbers. Furthermore, it would be necessary to prepare customised surveys to collect some of the more problematic variables, such as the extent of on-farm feeding and feed conversion ratios.

Drawing on a number of case studies, the report identifies the “pros and cons” of the various methodologies, discusses the data requirements for estimating feed use in the context of cereal balance sheets and reviews some of the options for a better estimation of cereal feed use.

Studies and working papers 337667
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Feb 2014

Over the past ten years, the increase in ethanol production in the United States has changed market dynamics in maize and related grain markets, which may impact prices and availability for more traditional grain uses such as food and feed. This paper, kindly prepared by the United States Department of Agriculture for AMIS, explores potential indicators to monitor profitability of ethanol production from maize.

Studies and working papers USA 360252
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Dec 2013

Since 2000, global production of ethanol, the most widely used transport renewable fuel, more than quadrupled, reaching in 2011 a total of 84.6 billion litres. This paper examines the nature of the relationship between crude oil, ethanol and the prices of maize, wheat and rice.

Studies and working papers USA 337668
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Oct 2013

Feed use accounts for about a third of world consumption of cereals. Despite its significance, feed utilization is a largely unknown component in supply and demand balances. Within the framework of a global scoping report conducted for the Agricultural Market Information System (AMIS), this paper reviews feed consumption patterns and methods for estimating feed use in Indonesia.

Studies and working papers IDN 337667
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Oct 2013

Feed use accounts for about a third of world consumption of cereals. Despite its significance, feed utilization is a largely unknown component in supply and demand balances. Within the framework of a global scoping report conducted for the Agricultural Market Information System (AMIS), this paper reviews feed consumption patterns and methods for estimating feed use in China.

http://www.amis-outlook.org/resources-list/detail/en/c/294276/

Studies and working papers CHN 337667
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Oct 2013

The tide of financial flows into commodities markets, seemingly unstoppable over the past decade, appears to be ebbing. The simplest explanation for the cooling commodities enthusiasm is a significant price decline across several sectors. However, the reality involves many complex variables explained in this paper, including federal regulators’ re-examination of the banking sector’s commodities activities, allegations of commodity price manipulation in the energy and metals markets, a review of high speed computerized trading and rising interest rates following a signaled change in monetary policy by the US Federal Reserve.

Studies and working papers 337668
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Oct 2012

AMIS Research Paper No. 1 addresses the challenge of how best to utilize available global information in order to strengthen global capacity to issue early warnings of possible price volatility, and thus enhance food security and emergency policy responses to threats to food security. 

Studies and working papers 337666
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Oct 2012

The monitoring of global markets requires a close watch of crop development in each country/region during the growing season. It is for this reason that an easy-to-use crop calendar covering the most important producing countries could be a valuable tool for market analysis.

This document was produced with the collaboration of the Mexican Agri-food and Fishery Information Service, which is part of the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Rural Development, Fisheries and Food (SAGARPA), during the Mexican Presidency of the G20 Group.

Guidelines and handbooks 0
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Nov 2011

Greater understanding of global markets is one of the main objectives of AMIS. For this reason, identifying indicators which can signal changing market conditions on a timely basis will be among its first outputs. This section briefly describes two indicators, commonly used by participants in the futures and cash markets, which are relevant to importers and exporters. 

Studies and working papers 337668
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Nov 2011

During the periods of global food crisis and price spikes that have occurred since mid-2007, there have been reports of widespread price rises across the world. Changes in domestic prices are determined by a number of factors, one of them being prices in the world markets.

Studies and working papers 337668
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