ROME – The FAO Food Price Index advanced 4 points, or 2 percent, from December to January, the agency said.

Prices for all commodities increased with oils registering the biggest gains, followed by cereals, sugar, dairy prices and meat. The FAO Meat Price Index averaged 179 points, half a percent (1 point) above its December value, the agency said. Prices of various meat types were mixed, with pig meat up 2.8 percent on expectations of strong imports by China. Poultry prices retreated by one percent.

This is the first increase in the index since July 11. However, at 214 points the index is 7 percent lower compared to January 2011.