MILAN, April 5 (Reuters) - Global food prices rose in March for a third month in a row driven by gains in vegetable oils and grains, adding to inflationary pressure, the United Nations’ FAO index showed on Thursday.
The index, which measures monthly price changes for a food basket of cereals, oilseeds, dairy, meat and sugar, averaged 215.9 points in March, up from revised 215.4 points in February, data from the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) showed.
The FAO has also raised its estimate of the world cereal carryover stocks in 2012 by 1 million tonnes from the previous estimate to 519 million tonnes, which is 15.6 million tonnes, or 3.1 percent above their opening levels.
The FAO confirmed its earlier forecast for the world wheat output to fall 1.4 percent from last year’s record crop to 690 million tonnes in 2012.
Reporting by Svetlana Kovalyova