Food Inflation Risk Jumps

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Food price inflation was among the largest drivers of overall US inflation two years ago. Some meats and bread prices rose by double digits year over year. According to monthly CPI reports in early 2024, those increases have come under control. However, the future of food prices appears to be one in which these could jump even more than in the spring of 2022. 

Water Use –American Farms Vary

American Relocation –Weather Drives Home Buying

According to a research paper published by Nature titled Global warming and heat extremes to enhance inflationary pressure, “The empirical evidence for the historical impacts of weather shocks on inflation suggests that the ongoing warming and intensification of weather extremes and variability due to anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions may have consequences for future inflation.” The authors also note that much of the effect will be on agricultural products. Global warming could reverse the trend of lower food prices.

Lower Crop Yield

The EPA released a report on climate change and US crop production late last year. It noted that air pollution, floods, and drought could lower crop yield considerably. Among the conclusions, “Climate change can also increase the threat of wildfires. Wildfires pose major risks to farmlands, grasslands, and rangelands. Temperature and precipitation changes will also very likely expand the occurrence and range of insects, weeds, and diseases.  This could lead to a greater need for weed and pest control.”

The US provides food to both Americans and many other nations. USDA puts this export figure at almost $180 billion a year. That means these higher costs may be “exported,” and America’s role as “breadbasket to the world” may no longer be a good description.

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