‘A Surge In Global Food Prices Could Trigger Social Unrest Everywhere,’ Albert Edwards Warns

‘A Surge In Global Food Prices Could Trigger Social Unrest Everywhere,’ Albert Edwards Warns

Albert Edwards is worried about cereal. Specifically, whether you'll be able to afford it going forward. I jest. Humor is a prerequisite for covering Albert's weekly missives, so I feel somehow derelict in my editorial duties if I don't give him and readers an opportunity to chuckle at the outset. That said, the subject of this week's piece from Edwards -- food scarcity -- is anything but funny, and kudos to Albert for drawing attention to it. Earlier this month, the United Nations' food age
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6 thoughts on “‘A Surge In Global Food Prices Could Trigger Social Unrest Everywhere,’ Albert Edwards Warns

    1. Depends, the CPI is sort of weird in that to the best of my understanding it doesn’t use a fixed basket of goods but rather attempts to swap around goods to predict substitutions people will make. Maybe beef, pork, chicken, turkey, eggs and fish all went up in price but tofu is still reasonable so therefore if everyone bought tofu at current prices then no inflation so CPI is flat. I doubt if it factors in what tofu would cost in the event all the excess demand actually moved there.

  1. I watched a CNN story about the long lines for food handouts. There were a lot of expensive looking vehicles in those lineups. That could be an expansive story in and of itself.

    1. It’s what we’ve been brainwashed to do: jumbo mortgages on McMansions we don’t need, leases on trucks and automobiles we can’t afford. Turn on the TV and check out the ads. “Look what daddy brought home for Christmas, kids. Two gigantic Lexuses (Lexi?)!!”

  2. There are rising signs that global economies could go south very quickly. Besides all the developed countries’ machinations to fight an economic downturn, let’s not forget there are a handful of countries who would love to see it all collapse and are certainly working nefariously to make it happen. If we’ve learned anything in the 21st century, it’s that it can unravel in the blink of an eye. For instance, how extensive is the recently discovered Russian hack. I suspect even our cyber experts don’t know, and how many more are there yet to be discovered. The cold war has started again and our adversaries have won at least a couple of rounds over the last 4 years while our king has knowingly or not played into their hands. Russia has infiltrated much of our government and the Chinese economy (if you can believe the data) seems to be recovering much better from the pandemic than the West. And that whole trade deficit fight with them seems to be going very much in their favor, meanwhile the current administration is focused on trashing as much of government as they can before they have to be dragged out because that’s who they have always been.

  3. It’s always struck me that food security has never really been that much of a priority in the US. The main food bank in my metro area has set major distribution records this year. Food stamps have been attacked for many years as a waste of money. When China changed its economy after the revolution, the highest priority in the first several five year plans was to make sure everyone had food. Starving people can’t create a developed economy. I have never seen anything like that in the US. Besides food stamps we set up much of our solution around school-based distribution but that doesn’t do anything for adults, weekends and other “cracks in the system. So tens of millions don’t get enough to eat. Part of the reason is that many of us collectively find solace in the idea that people without enough to eat are somehow all lazy losers anyway and their hunger is their fault so we aren’t responsible for their problem. All this in a nation whose politicians, at least, like to characterize as “Christian.” Our priorities with grain aren’t aimed at feeding ourselves. Rather they lie with supporting exports that enrich our farmers. Somewhat ironic given that one of the hidden areas of food poverty is rural America. We should be ashamed. For those who might think this is just talk on my part this year I donated two months of my base income to food banks, three times what I spent on my own food.

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