World On The Brink Of Food Shortage !!! – 10 More Years Of Expensive Food: Says UN

As of December 2007, 37 countries faced food crises and 20 had imposed some sort of price controls. Foods costs worldwide spiked 23% from 2006 to 2007, according to the UN food organisation. Grain went up by 42%, oils 50% and dairy 80%.

Already the Paris based UN World Food Program is facing a $500m shortfall in financing this year to feed 89m needy people. The UN in a 20th March letter  has sent out an appeal to donors so as not to scale back food aid.

Petroleum prices are one of the driving forces increasing the cost of everything from fertilizers to transport to food processing. In rapidly developing countries like China and India, rising demand for meat and dairy is sending up the cost of grain used for cattle feed, as is the demand for raw materials to make bio-fuels. Raising prices  also mean that the world’s poorest people will have to spend a large proportion of their income on food, the the UN agency said, and they will buy less food, food that is less nutritious.

Although farmers will grow more grain for fuel and food as is happening with wheat, with more more crops to be planted in the US, Canada and Europe next year, according to UN projections, consumers still face at least 10 more years of expensive food.

Here in the Caribbean, Caricom governments have issued a list of food items in which the CET {Common External Tariff} have either been reduced or removed for 2 years on the recommendation of the Caricom’s Council For Trade and Development which held a meeting in January. CET is meant to protect local supplies from similar ones being imported.

At a recent concluded conference held in Bahamas, the Director General of the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation, Mr Jacques Diouf warned Caricom governments that the world is on the brink of a serious food shortage. Mr Diouf impress upon the Caricom Heads the gravity of the situation and “that they must do everything possible within their borders to produce what ever they can because the prognosis is that food on the world market would become more and more in short supply and automatically become more and more expensive.”

Reports reaching us is that Trinidad plans to convert up to 20,000 acres of state-owned lands into large farms and are looking to Cuba for expertise in mass-producing fruits and vegetables for local consumption to offset food prices.

Here in Barbados, petrol, flour, electricity, have attracted subsidies whilst lamb and beef have a temporary reprieve.

One Response to World On The Brink Of Food Shortage !!! – 10 More Years Of Expensive Food: Says UN

  1. Pingback: Jamaica To Import 30,000 Tonnes Of Rice To Prevent Shortfall What About Barbados? « Bajan Global Report

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