Global food prices will remain high and volatile throughout this year and into next despite record food production.

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) twice yearly Food Outlook analysis says rising demand will absorb most of the higher output.

It says its index of food prices in May was at 232, only six points below February's record high of 237.

FAO says higher food prices could mean poor countries will see food import costs rise by up to 30%. That would mean them spending 18% of their total import bills on food this year, compared with the world average of 7%.

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