The rich, the poor, and the hungry

On a finite planet, the cost of meeting consumer demand is going to go up very steeply.

USDA Photo
Mississippi River floodwaters overtaking cornfields in Mississippi in 2011.
Gwynne Dyer
Published: Thursday, 08/16/2012 12:00 am EDT

Two months ago, the United States Department of Agriculture forecast the biggest maize (corn) harvest in history: 376 million tonnes. After two months of record heat and drought in the US Midwest, it has dropped its forecast to 274 million tonnes. So by early July it was predicting that the price per bushel of maize would exceed $8 for the first time in history, and it’s now forecasting $8.90.

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