UN warns of looming food crisis - Macleans.ca

UN warns of looming food crisis

Officials meet in Rome to discuss emergency plans


The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization is meeting in Rome today to discuss a major new food crisis caused by environmental disasters and market speculation. The meeting was called last month after a heat wave and wildfires in Russia led to an export ban on wheat, which sparked food riots in Mozambique. Aside from environmental disasters, food pries are also rising because of the pension and hedge funds, sovereign wealth funds, and large banks who speculate on commodity markets. Olivier De Schutter, the UN’s special rapporteur on food, blamed price and the volatility of food commodities on the emergence of a “speculative bubble,” which he traces back to the early 2000s. Food prices are currently on the rise in India and Nepal, as well as in Latin America and China. The emergency meeting in Rome is seen as a warning that there may be another food crisis looming.

The Guardian

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UN warns of looming food crisis

  1. This panic story has been making the rounds for decades at least since way back in the 60's and no doubt before. Sorry, but this pilgrim is not buying it now, especially given that it is the UN pushing the panic button this time.

    • We may not have experienced it, but it did happen in many African and asian nations.

    • Don't forget that the world population is now at least doubled since then

  2. It is usually a call for more money hand outs. But then if we consider the flooding happening in agricultural areas, they might have reasons to push the panic button this time.

  3. At least there's some realization that market manipulation of commodities is the cause of the artificial shortages, not under production. While some prime agricultural regions have suffered this year, it is not a unique situation in that someone's crops are almost always having a bad year; somewhere. The difference is that by guessing that demand will rise, the markets are "creating" the phantom demand by buying futures at inflated prices before real demand has chance to become factored.

    Same with oil and metals but when it's food, people will riot if they fear hunger. I'm not a socialist but there's a disturbing trend on the commodities market to turn and burn for the almighty pension fund instead of honest trading.