Friday, 17 June 2022

If able to, prepare and try not to ignore the warnings!

Its amazing how many headlines are squirreled away on web sites but often don't appear always on the main news. I found this one yesterday on the BBC Business page - food prices to rise. Just in case the link disappears, I have copied and pasted most of it here:

Food prices will rise quickly this summer due to soaring costs, grocery analysts have predicted.

Prices will rise at a rate of 15% as households pay more for staples such as bread, meat, dairy and fruit and vegetables, the Institute of Grocery Distribution (IGD) said.

More vulnerable people will skip meals, it warned.

It also predicted that prices would rise faster for longer than Bank of England estimates.

The IGD, which provides analysis to major grocers, said the UK was facing the highest cost of living pressures since the 1970s, mainly down to the Ukraine war.

Both Ukraine and Russia are major global grain producers - the countries together account for nearly a third of global wheat exports.

So Russia's invasion of Ukraine is pushing up grain prices as countries around the world scramble for the produce.

Products that use grains directly, such as bread, and products made of animals that are fed on grain, such as chicken, will rise quickly in price in the summer or autumn, IGD said.

Chickens grow quickly, so it will only take weeks for animal-feed price rises to be felt by consumers.

The squeeze on fuel and energy costs will also push food prices higher, because a lot of agriculture is very energy intensive, it said. Fertiliser prices have also nearly tripled since last year.

A lot of foil and wood pulp normally come from Russia, and the war has driven up packaging prices of those materials. Plastic packaging, which is made from oil, is also more expensive.

Ukrainian roads, ports and warehouses have been heavily damaged in the war, and so the volume of exports will be reduced "for years to come" IGD said, putting pressure on supplies of sunflower oil and wheat.

The UK also faces particular problems, it said. Two-thirds of the people on the Seasonal Agricultural Workers scheme were from Ukraine last year, but this year, Ukrainian men between 18 and 60-years-old have been told to stay at home and fight.

Gaps are being plugged by workers from further afield, but the new workers need training, and those costs will feed into price rises, IGD said.

The UK gets about 40% of its food from outside the country, so it is exposed to global food price rises.

And since Brexit, European Union producers are less likely to prioritise UK customers, it said.

The Bank of England expects inflation to fall back next year, but IGD said higher inflation could last longer if there are more food export bans or more trade disruption due to new Brexit border arrangements in 2023.

 

6 comments:

  1. The amount of food we import must have gone up because just a year or so ago we were producing over 60% so that's another problem. The government's new food strategy is to produce more but then on the other hand 'they' are allowing more homes on greenfield sites and more land used for solar farms and for growing crops for heat producing.
    All very worrying

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    1. It’s not just us unfortunately. A lot of Europe, the USA, Canada, Australia are all seeing the same problems. Lack of infrastructure, relying on green energy that isn’t currently capable of sustaining us and like you say, too much building on green belt land when there is a huge amount of brown belt going spare.

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  2. The whole situation is worrying isn't it, and it's the poorest families that will be hit the hardest ... as usual. I think this is one of, or even the main reason, that so many people are suddenly interested in WW2 rationing again. Even Carolyn was surprised that so many have joined in with her one month rationing experiment. I think it will last longer than just that one month for a lot of them.

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    Replies
    1. Anything is better than nothing but they need to get hold of items while they can.

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  3. We all have relied far too long on cheap energy for production and transport and cheap labour far away for most of our goods. A change would have been necessary anyway for environmental reasons, now, however, the war in Ukraine has speeded everything up.
    Hilde in Germany

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    Replies
    1. I agree. We were talking the other day about how once upon a time, each country predominantly grew/raised and kept most of their own food. Now everyone seems to export everything.

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