There was a food crisis in 2007 that lasted for about a year, and the food prices of today look very similar to what happened during that time.
The head of the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization is warning about the possibility of an impending food crisis. In 2007 and 2008, riots plagued Kenya and a few dozen other countries. People were not able to afford food they needed. We are facing a similar crisis now. High energy prices are pushing up food costs as well. On top of that, terrible weather conditions, increased demand for biofuels and low reserves of grains are causing those prices to steadily tick upward.
Many exporters have increase their production in response to this problem, but a lot of the more vulnerable countries are falling behind. These are the same countries that suffered from riots and various other problems during 2007-2008’s food crisis. In many developing countries, food prices are ridiculously high. There is the constant threat there that a new food crisis is developing. Energy levels never recovered from that last global food crisis, and many crops are still being used to create biofuels. Very little besides the amount of grain we store has changed in the past decade. The UN expert, Jacques Diouf, says that all the signs of a new crisis are present.
Little has actually changed about the world’s food production systems since the previous crisis. If there is a serious flooding or drought problem, he says, then we will be right back where we started. Climate change is bringing serious weather problems with it that are affecting countries all over the world. On top of that, the population is expected to increase by 50% in the year 2050. It’s the developing countries that will see the largest population growth. Diouf also warns that not enough money is being invested in the right places. Eight nations pledged a total of $20 billion at the G-8 summit to help out farmers to increase the food supply. Countries have been slow in meeting their commitments, though.
Many developing countries also need better irrigation. On top of that, they have poor fertilisers and low-yield seeds that are causing food shortages over and over again. If the investments that were promised are not received, then another food crisis will come, he says.