Blog: Dean BestCounting the real cost of soaring food prices

Dean Best | 12 March 2008

The price of wheat has soared 130% in the past year and with a global population expected to top 9bn by the middle of the century, pressures on the world's resources such as land, water and oil show no sign of abating.

Yet it’s not just the price of wheat that has risen in the last year. Other staples such as corn and soya are trading at well above their 1990s averages, with an 87% rise in soya and a 31% increase in corn.

As we have discussed on these pages before, a large cause of this is the rising price of oil and fears over climate change which have seen a tremendous uptake in the use of maize to make bio-fuels, which in turn has pushed food prices right up.

There is little doubt that food inflation has become an emotive topic in the world's media and the subject has the potential to be hijacked by any number of interest groups. It's useful then to be able to fall back on some hard facts every now and then.

That's just what the BBC has done this week as part of its look at the subject and these tables - the link is below - are worth bookmarking.

 

Click here for the BBC's breakdown of facts and figures surrounding the cost of food


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