ROME, ITALY — Global food commodity prices decreased in July due to lower prices for some cereals, dairy and sugar, more than offsetting firmer prices for meat and oils, according to the he Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) Food Price Index (FPI).

It is a trade-weighted index that measures prices of five major food commodities on international markets. The index averaged 170.9 points in July 2019, slipping 1.1% below its level in June but up 2.3% from a year earlier.

The FAO Cereal Price Index averaged 168.6 points in July, down 2.7%, or 4.6 points, from June but 4.1% above its level in the same period of last year.

“The decline in July was driven by lower wheat and maize prices,” the FAO said. “In wheat markets, despite downward adjustments to production prospects in several countries, large export supplies and continued expectations of record world production this year weighed on international prices.”

Maize prices fell in July due to expanding export availabilities, specifically in Argentina and Brazil.

However, the FAO’s all rice price index marked its fifth successive month of stability, amid generally quiet market activity.

The FAO Vegetable Oil Price Index averaged 126.5 points in July, up 0.8%, or 1 point, from the previous month but still 11% below last year’s corresponding level.

“Overall, firmer soy and sunflower oil prices more than offset a further drop in palm oil values,” the FAO said. “The concurrence of seasonal production rises in Southeast Asia and sluggish global import demand continued weighing on palm oil prices. On the other hand, soy oil prices appreciated almost in tandem with rising soybean values while low crush volumes in the U.S. also contributed to the increase.”