|AP / Mustafa Quraishi|
Food inflation continues unabated in India. Since 2009, the price of milk, wheat, rice, pulses, and potatoes — staple food items — have risen by double digit percentages, putting the average urban household living on $4,000 per year under further strain.
The latest spike in food shows lentils, rice and vegetables surging 11.49% year over year for the week of Feb. 12, according to the agricultural index, putting pressure on India’s government ahead of budget meetings scheduled for the coming week.
A new round of protests has been organized by the All India Trade Union Congress and the Centre for Industrial Trade Union. The rampant food inflation is made doubly painful because of growing unemployment.
The triple threat that India is experiencing of rising food prices, low wages — particularly among the rural population — and job insecurity is compounded by food shortages due to repeated cycles of drought and flooding.
Unrest throughout the Middle East and North Africa continues to drive fuel prices higher, leading to an increasing rate of oil inflation. As we saw in 2008 when oil prices spiked to nearly $150/bbl, food price inflation immediately followed.
How much longer before the same perfect storm of food, fuel, inflation, and lack of employment turns the streets of America into those of Delhi? Record numbers of Americans are already on food assistance, while food prices continue to skyrocket, and U.S. lawmakers seek to cut food stamp benefits.
Additionally, as the mainstream media continues to propagate an economic recovery in America, unemployment and the standard of living continues to strain American families. It’s almost as if someone wants to provoke more food riots across the world.
Sources for this article: