Archive for the ‘food prices’ Category

Philippines to Accelerate Food Security Discussion

April 20, 2008

From Peace and Freedom: A shortage of rice has created unrest in the streets in the Philippines.  As a result, as in many other countries, “food security” is now the number one topic in the government….

By Norman Bordadora
Philippine Daily Inquirer
April 20, 2008

MANILA, Philippines–After a six-week recess, Congress resumes its session Monday afternoon with food security at the top of the agenda and the population control bill to be given a second look.

Speaker Prospero Nograles said on Sunday all measures pending in the House of Representatives pertaining to food security should be addressed before Congress adjourns in June.

Nograles also said the chamber would pass a legislated wage hike if the regional wage boards were to fail to pass adjustments ordered by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

“Food is the priority for everyone, not only for the House,” Nograles told the Philippine Daily Inquirer (parent company of on Sunday.

“All agriculture bills on food production and sufficiency will be discussed,” he said.

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China says prices of farm goods up 25.5 percent

April 18, 2008

By JOE McDONALD, AP Business Writer

BEIJING – China’s government issued more gloomy inflation news Friday, saying wholesale prices for farm goods jumped 25.5 percent in the first quarter in a sign that consumers could face more sharp rises in living costs.
Communist leaders, worried about a possible public backlash, are trying to ease food shortages blamed for the price spike that began in mid-2007. But winter storms disrupted that effort, and analysts expect inflation to stay high as late as May before subsides.

Retail consumer prices rose 8.3 percent in March, a slight decline from February’s 8.7 percent, the highest rate in nearly 12 years. That was driven by a 21 percent rise in food costs, including a 66.7 percent increase for pork, the country’s staple meat.
An investor reacts at the stock price monitor at a private security ... 
An investor reacts at the stock price monitor at a private security company Friday April 18, 2008, in Shanghai, China. Chinese stocks sank to their lowest level in more than a year on Friday, as both retail and institutional investors unloaded shares in the absence of any market-boosting news. The Shanghai Composite Index fell 4 percent, or 128.07 points, to 3,094.66. It was its lowest close since it ended at 3,074.29 on March 23, 2007.(AP Photo)
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Food Shortage: More Bad News From China

April 17, 2008

By John E. Carey
Peace and Freedom

China announced Thursday huge tariffs on fertilizer exports and said agricultural land was in rapid decline due to industrialization.

China’s official communist news agency Xinhua News announced that export tariffs on fertilizer would increase by 100%.  This will cause a virtual shutdown in the export of fertilizer from China.  This is necessary to preserve fertilizer for suffering Chinese agriculture.

The fertilizer is widely used in rice, corn and wheat growing which is essential to feed the 1.3 billion Chinese.  China also hopes to control rapidly rising domestic agricultural costs and inflation.

“Agricultural costs [in China] are going through the roof. Land prices, the cost of money, the relative cost of labor, fertilizer, a shortage of seeds,” said Paul Schulte, of Lehman Brothers in Hong Kong. “Yet rising agricultural prices can be a windfall for those with economies of scale.”

The China News agency also said the amount of farmland has decreased to crisis levels.

Western observers said the two announcements on the same day are an effort to prepare the world for a food shortage crisis in China.

File photo shows a Chinese farmer working in his field next ...File photo shows a Chinese farmer working in his field next to a chemical factory near Yixing Town in Jiangsu province. The amount of farmland in China has shrunk to critical levels, state press reported on Thursday(AFP/File/Mark Ralston)

Thailand Pledges to Export Rice at “Reasonable Cost”

Food Crisis in North Korea a “Disaster”

Food and energy costs lead wholesale prices to soar in March

Food Shortages Causing Panic?

From rice in Peru to miso in Japan, food prices are rising

Perils in The Price Of Each Grain of Rice

Lowly Rice Grain Impacts Global Economy

China’s inflation highest in 12 years

February 19, 2008

BEIJING, China (AP) — China’s inflation accelerated in January to 7.1 percent — its highest rate in 12 years — after devastating snowstorms worsened food shortages, setting back government efforts to cool rising prices, according to data reported Tuesday.

Economists are warning that inflation could rise further in coming months due to food shortages and high costs for coal and other industrial materials before easing later in the year.

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China, Vietnam Gripped Again By Mighty Winter Cold

February 18, 2008

By John E. Carey
Peace and Freedom
February 18, 2008

China’s Xinhua news agency on Monday reported on renewed cold in northern Vietnam and mountainous Yunnan province, China. 
In Vietnam the cold killed 60,000 cattle and in China 800,000 people are stranded.
In Vietnam the record cold killed about 7,349 cattle in Ha Giang province, 6,400 in Lao Cai and 5,571 in Bac Can province.
In China’s Yunnan province eighty percent of the population of Qujing city remain without electricity and heat due to the combined impacts of severald cold spells.  The first heavy snows and sub zero cold hit this part of China in early January.
About 100,000 migratory birds have disappeared in eastern China during the recent severe cold and snow.
In Taiwan, vegetable prices are up 30 to 50% in the last three weeks due to cold weather.

In this photo released by China's Xinhua news agency, a rickshaw ... 
In this photo released by China’s Xinhua news agency, a rickshaw paddler moves in the snow in Yinchuan, capital of northwest China’s Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, Sunday, Feb. 17, 2008. The city sees the first snowfall after the Spring Festival.
(AP Photo/ Xinhua, Wang Peng)

The record cold, freezing and snow has engulfed nations and peoples from Afghanistan eastward to China since before January 1, 2008.

In Afghanistan, mountainous wild animals have come into lowland villages seeking food.

Officials in Pakistan say 1,000 people have died from exposure.In China, as the Lunar New Year was starting, 20 million migrants had family travel plans disrupted.Related:
Roughest Winter Ever in Afghanistan, Pakistan, China — Thousands Die From Exposure

China struggles to avoid past mistakes in controlling food prices

February 11, 2008
by Guy Newey

HONG KONG (AFP) – Rocketing food prices in China have sown deep concern among the communist leadership, ever wary of social unrest, as they fumble to control inflation without repeating past mistakes, analysts say.
Overall inflation in China is running at a 10-year high — around 6.9 percent in November year-on-year, official statistics show.

Inflation is now being driven almost exclusively by increases in the price of food, in particular the staple meat, pork, which has spiked 60 percent year-on-year.

Prices have faced even greater upward pressure in recent weeks, as severe weather has crippled the country’s transport system at the time demand is greatest, over Lunar New Year, the major annual holiday when millions of people return to home.

A report by Credit Suisse said 10 percent of China’s farming land has been affected by the extreme cold, and one percent could see a complete loss of crops and vegetables.

Price increases have been seen in food items ranging from cooking oil to apple juice, as China’s growth and global demand creates what economists have dubbed “agflation” referring specifically to rises in prices of agricultural commodities.

Analysts say authorities…
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China warns worst not over in weather crisis

February 2, 2008

GUANGZHOU, China (AFP) – China warned Saturday the worst was not over in its national weather crisis as desperate holiday travellers jammed transport hubs and others endured bitter winter storms without power or water.
Passengers walk past a row of Chinese soldiers near the railway ... 
Passengers walk past a row of Chinese soldiers near the railway station, in China’s southern city of Guangzhou, on February 2. China warned the worst was not over in its national weather crisis as desperate crowds trying to get home jammed transport hubs and others braved the frigid cold without power or water.
(AFP/Liu Jin) 

Bracing for still more foul weather and an accelerating travel rush, China has doubled the number of troops and paramilitary forces aiding winter storm relief efforts to more than a million, state media reported.

The worst winter in decades has caused massive transport bottlenecks and power outages across wide areas in the lead-up to next week’s Lunar New Year, China’s biggest annual holiday.

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Food Prices: 17 Year High?

January 11, 2008

COLUMBIA — Consumers all over the world can expect to pay more for food in coming years.

The Economic Research Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture expects prices to rise another 4 percent this year. If the projected increase for 2008 proves true, consumers will see the highest increase in food prices since 1990.

With commodity prices hitting record levels and energy costs increasing, retailers must make up for the difference in the form of higher food costs.

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Forget oil, the new global crisis is food

January 6, 2008

By Alia McMullen
Financial Post (Canada)
January 04, 2008
A new crisis is emerging, a global food catastrophe that will reach further and be more crippling than anything the world has ever seen. The credit crunch and the reverberations of soaring oil prices around the world will pale in comparison to what is about to transpire, Donald Coxe, global portfolio strategist at BMO Financial Group said at the Empire Club’s 14th annual investment outlook in Toronto on Thursday.
Corn grows in a farm field near Seneca, Illinois. Rising demand for grain to make fuel, food and livestock feed has helped push the prices of corn and soybeans.Scott Olson/Getty ImagesCorn grows in a farm field near Seneca, Illinois. Rising demand for grain to make fuel, food and livestock feed has helped push the prices of corn and soybeans.
“It’s not a matter of if, but when,” he warned investors. “It’s going to hit this year hard.”

Mr. Coxe said the sharp rise in raw food prices in the past year will intensify in the next few years amid increased demand for meat and dairy products from the growing middle classes of countries such as China and India as well as heavy demand from the biofuels industry…..

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