As the food prices shoot up world-wide again after peaking in early 2008 there is concern all around that the two big price spikes within four years, suggests that something serious is rattling world food chain. Several world institutions are also having such concerns. This was reflected in the concerns of G8 industrial countries in 2009, who put food alongside the financial crisis on their list of top priorities, promising to find $20 billion for agriculture over 3 years. Gates Foundation which till now has focused on health has started to concentrate on feeding the world. Even at the WEF at Davos earlier during the year, 17 global companies launched a program on agriculture, promising to promote markets for smallholders. All this indicates towards sign of rising concerns on food security.
Reasons for increase in prices include increase in demand for food from several developing countries with increase in their incomes, increase in world population (likely to reach 7 billion within 2011-2012), increasing use of agricultural produces for fuel, and of course fall in the value of the dollar.
This increase in prices has again plunged into poverty millions who spend more than half their income on food. The number of those below the poverty level of $1.25 a day, which was falling consistently in the 1990s, rose sharply in 2007-08, indicating that world cannot even feed its current population. Huge question looming the world leaders is how will they cope with population of 9 billion, which it is likely to rise by 2050.
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