World food prices were unchanged in September, with a sharp fall in sugar prices offsetting more mild increases in prices for vegetable oils and meat, according to information released Thursday by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
The index fell for three consecutive months before September after rising for five straight months.
Despite the lack of movement in the index in September, it remained 3.3 percent higher than it was in September 2018.
Prices for grains and cereals -- the largest component in the index -- were unchanged compared to August. But there was movement among the components of the index, with rice and corn prices falling slightly and wheat prices moving slightly higher.
Dairy prices were also steady, falling just 0.6 percent compared to August.
The biggest mover in the index was for sugar, whose prices fall 3.9 percent in September due to a strong forecast for supply moving forward.
Meanwhile, vegetable oil prices climbed 1.4 percent and meat prices were up nearly 1 percent.
The monthly FAO Food Price Index is based on worldwide prices for 23 food commodity categories covering prices for 73 different products compared to a baseline year.
The next index is scheduled to be released Nov. 7.