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High cost of food

FOOD prices worldwide will remain stubbornly high in 2013, the UN food agency said.

The cost of food fell for the third month in a row in December, but low stocks pose the risk of price increases if crops fail.

A surge in food prices over the summer of 2012 was fuelled by the worst drought in more than half a century in the US.

Dry weather in other major exporters raised fears of a repeat of the 2008 food crisis.

But the Food and Agriculture Organisation's price index, which measures monthly price changes for a basket of food, fell for the third month to its lowest level since June.