July 21, 2008

World 2008 cereal crop to reach record 2.18 billion tonnes

World 2008 cereal output will rise 2.8 percent on the year to a record 2.18 billion metric tonnes, according to the UN's Food and Agriculture Organization Friday.

"Most of the increase is in wheat, following significant expansion in plantings in all regions," said FAO.

Global rice output is tentatively forecast to rise slightly from last season's "good" level, added the agency.

However FAO also warned that despite the large crop, cereal markets will remain tight this season.

"Total cereal supply will barely exceed the anticipated utilization and the world cereal reserves will recover only marginally from the current estimated 30-year low," said FAO.

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