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Global food prices skyrocket amid Ukraine-Russia conflict

Concerns over food security rise

Global food prices have reached an all-time high leading to concerns across the world. World food prices have risen by about 13 per cent in March.

The poorer countries and the most vulnerable people have been the worst affected. For example, the rise in prices have dealt a severe blow to Sri Lanka, which is staring at a bankruptcy. The island nation is in the grip of acute food shortage. What is worse is that sources said that there is no immediate solution in sight.

According to the United Nations, the Russia-Ukraine conflict has driven up international prices for wheat, maize and vegetable oils, as war in the Black Sea region spread shocks through the markets trading in these staples.

Also read: Will India emerge as key global player in wheat after sanctions on Russia?

The UN agency said that expectations point to the European Union and India increasing wheat exports.

The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) Food Price Index averaged 159.3 points in March, up 12.6 per cent from February when it had already reached its highest level since its inception in 1990.The index tracks monthly changes in international prices.

Food prices have been increasing even before the Russia-Ukraine war but the conflict has made things worse.

“It is now more than two years that the COVID-19 pandemic continues to negatively impact our lives, our health and our economies,” said FAO chief QU Dongyu.

The FAO has warned that food prices could rise further by 20 per cent resulting in increased malnutrition across the globe.