A global food crisis is expected this fall amid the war in Ukraine, the pandemic and weather disasters, and a House Ag panel looked at U.S. overseas food aid programs as it prepares to write the next farm bill. House Ag Livestock and Foreign Ag Chair Jim Costa highlighted a story on the looming food crisis and his request with other lawmakers for more U.S. international food aid. Costa; “The title this morning is, ‘Russia’s war in Ukraine, we see the storm coming and the US struggles to contain a deepening global food crisis.’”
Ag Ranking Republican GT Thompson had a similar warning; “Everything we’ve heard really leads to a pretty grim conclusion, that by this fall, we’re going to see a significant increase in hunger, starvation and death by famine.”
With Ukraine and Russia supplying 26 percent of world wheat exports, Ukraine 13 percent of global corn and the largest share of sunflower oil, and Russia, much of the world’s oil, gas and fertilizer.
USAID’s Sarah Charles; “The Ukrainian Ministry of Agriculture, their estimates right now are that Ukraine may be able to plant, plant for the spring season, and yield something in the range of 50 percent of what a normal harvest might be from that spring crop.”
Depending on diesel availability, but the war’s impact will still be profound. “As a result of the war, we could face another 10 to 20-percent rise in commodity prices due to supply chain disruptions and export restrictions. In the Yemeni city of Aden, the price of a piece of bread increased by 62-percent in less than one-week, after the start of the war.”
Charles says USAID and USDA are discussing drawing down funding from the Bill Emerson Humanitarian Trust, a special Food For Peace farm bill authority of emergency grain and cash reserves.