20% Surge in Prices Happens Nationwide

20% Surge in Prices Happens Nationwide

(RightWing.org) – As if rising gas costs weren’t bad enough, there’s a new threat to our cost of living. Global food prices are increasing, and they hit a record high last month. Now the war in Ukraine means they could go much higher still.

On March 4, the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) released its latest report on food costs. The Food Price Index tracks monthly changes in the price of a virtual basket of five staple foods, and last month, it climbed by 3.9% over January’s price. That smashes the previous record monthly increase of 3.1% in February 2011 and brings the one-year increase to a horrifying 24.1%.

There’s worse news to come. The FAO says February’s increase was primarily due to sharp rises in vegetable oil and dairy product prices, but part of it came from a jump in cereal costs. Wheat prices rose 2.1% on the world market in February as buyers looked nervously at Russia and Ukraine, two of the world’s largest wheat exporters. The former is now under strict trade sanctions, and the latter is fighting for survival. With Russian and Ukrainian wheat off the market this year, prices are likely to skyrocket. The US is self-sufficient in wheat, but American wheat still sells at global market prices, so the cost of bread and other foods here will rise, too.

In addition to that, meat costs are rising too, and there’s no sign of a slowdown in dairy, either. So, once you’ve used over-priced gas driving to the grocery store, inflation will take another bite at the checkout stand.

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