Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Dying For An S.U.V.

Did you know that people are literally dying to maintain their dependence on oil?

No, I'm not talking about the wars even though it's true there as well. I'm talking about food prices.

Jan. 14 (Bloomberg) -- Corn rose to the highest ever in Chicago, gaining the maximum permitted by the exchange, on speculation that global demand for feed and biofuel will exceed production for the seventh time in the past eight years.

World inventories of corn will fall to the lowest since 1984 on Sept. 30, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said Jan. 11. Inventories in the U.S., the world's largest producer and exporter, will be 20 percent smaller than forecast last month, the USDA said. Prices have jumped 49 percent in the past five months, even after last year's record harvest.

"The decline in supplies was a shock to people that have to use these commodities," said Jeff Beal a consultant for Strategic Marketing Services Inc. in Rockford, Illinois.
The only thing wrong with that quote is the last paragraph. The growth in corn prices, and indeed all agricultural commodities, is and has been forseen for some time.

The big drive to use corn for fuel is stupid on so many levels. It's not only inefficient, it's reducing the world's food supply significantly. I thought oil was going to be an inflation driver, but it looks like grocery store prices are going to be right up there at the top.

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