Friday, April 25, 2008

Food Crisis: World Roundup

Britain's The Independent has a roundup detailing how the global food crisis is affecting different parts of the world. In China, for example, food prices have risen 21 percent this year. The World Food Programme is warning of a potential repeat of the famine that hit North Korea in the 1990s, killing millions.

Leaders from Bolivia, Nicaragua and Cuba flew to Venezuela this week to announce a joint $100m scheme to combat the impact of rising food prices on the region's poor. Riots tore through Ivory Coast after the prices of meat and wheat increased by 50 per cent within a week, and violent protests were also seen in Cameroon, Burkina Faso and Senegal. Hundreds of thousands of poor Africans in Uganda and Sudan are to lose out on a vital source of food after World Vision, one of the world's largest humanitarian organisations, said it was cutting aid to 1.5m people.

The government of the Philippines has been desperately trying to secure alternative sources of rice to counteract the decision of a number of nations, including India, to halt rice exports.

In the U.K. the government's estimates that grocery bills have gone up by an average of 12 percent over the past 12 months. And in the U.S., two of the country's largest warehouse stores this week announced that they would limit the number of bags of rice each customer could buy, in an effort to prevent people from stockpiling.


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