Global maize markets are currently experiencing a period of excessive price volatility. This is the first such period since June 2011 and can be largely attributed to conditions in the Midwest United States, which is experiencing the worst drought in 56 years. The United States is the world's largest maize exporter.
The USDA has downgraded its estimates of the nation's corn yields from 15 to 13 billion bushels. This downgrade could trigger a rebound in global maize prices from their 21-month low in June, according to the UN. In July alone, maize futures on the Chicago Board of Trade have surged by 22 percent to $7.75. The Maize Excessive Food Price Variability Early Warning System has seen excessive volatility in the commodity market since July 16.