NFM keeping eye on grain prices

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

FILE PHOTO: National Flour Mills, Wrightson Road, Port of Spain. –

THE National Flour Mills (NFM) is closely monitoring global grain prices. NFM CEO Ian Mitchell made this comment recently, when asked by Newsday, if changes in these commodities could have an impact on the products that the company sells domestically.

“We are very aware of the knock-on effect that any increase in the price our products could have within the wider market, and we have been focusing our energies on improving our internal processes to ensure we keep the price of our products competitive.”

Mitchell observed that last year was difficult for the global grain sector with factors such as adverse weather conditions, the covid19 pandemic and supply chain challenges, affecting corn, wheat and soybean prices.

“Grain prices have increased throughout the year, and we obviously cannot sell our products for less than they cost us to produce.” He added, “So if these costs trends continue, we may have no choice but to review our current prices.”

NFM, Mitchell continued, has been doing its best to absorb any price shocks so increased prices of its products are not passed on to consumers.

“At NFM, we have simply focused on trying to do things better. Most importantly, we have suffered no major shortages of any of our products.”

Mitchell said NFM’s employees and their representative unions have been supportive of efforts to keep the business operational.

“We were able to reduce indirect manufacturing cost per tonne by four per cent versus the prior year despite the reduction in work hours necessitated by the (9,10 pm to 5 am) curfew (under the state of emergency-SoE).

He added, ” We also introduced continuous improvement initiatives which have resulted in reductions in the manufacturing costs that were within our control.”