Briefing: Lessons from past food crises

September 17, 2008 • Farming Practices, News

Thanks to John Tanton for this article.

A burgeoning population. Soaring energy costs. Rising demand for meat. A catastrophic harvest. A sudden run on the grain market – and an 80 percent surge in food prices in three years.

A brief run-down of the current world food crisis? Yes, but it also applies to the early 1970s – the last time the collective cupboard was bare. Despite similarities, today’s food price shock also has some striking features which sets it apart from past crises.

As world leaders gather in Rome Tuesday for a three-day United Nations conference on what steps to take to address the international food crisis, they might study what lessons can be learned from the recent pages of history.

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