19
Feb

Higher Food Prices due to Climate Change

Written on February 19, 2007 by Max Oliva in Environment

Max Oliva, Associate Director, Social Impact Management
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The Economist has just written an article which states that climate change may drive food prices higher. They are as always good in challenging the given views in order to strengthen the conversations. This impact has already been felt at economies such as the Mexican one, where the rise in the prize of corn (main ingredient in Tortillas) by more than 80 per cent has had political implications much larger than one would imagine.
Corn prices have started to move together with global oil markets, having a rising demand for ethanol and farmers turning fields over to filling US fuel tanks instead of Mexican tables.
Other agricultural products like wheat, which price has also risen by more than 40 per cent, is in part due to the drought in Australia. Soybean production may also be reduced by the incentive on farmers to rotate their crops to corn, given the high demand of the product, thus also increasing the prices of soybeans. It is this argument which the economist points out as increasing meat prices, for cattle and pigs which are fed on these products.
Arguments on not having enough land in the US to grow the required amounts of corn, and putting into question the environmental benefits of ethanol are discussed. As pointed out, it is very valuable to enrich the conversation, for global warming has no easy answer.

Comments

Weight Loss February 20, 2007 - 6:34 am

That’s a corny dilema

Manuel Rincon March 13, 2007 - 11:33 am

There are many elements related to climate change. Rafael Pampillon provided a very good argument for food. According to him, this sector is experiencing a huge degree of innovation and a very high budget for research projects. It is possible to say that the world will invent a way to feed us.
However, access to water is a different story. This is a limited resource that is disappearing and there is no way back.
I wrote about it in this blog:
http://manuellibano.blogspot.com/2007/02/el-agua.html
Manuel Rincon

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