Gastronomical Prices -- The Rising Cost of Food
"Rogers pretty much sees the American economy slowing to a crawl, so much that only the hunger drive can keep the U.S. from flat-lining completely," Maurna Desmond wrote in Forbes last month. "He recommends agriculture and other commodities as good investments during hard times."
And he's not alone. Hong Kong-based investment guru Marc Faber also subscribes to the boom in food commodities and even goes a step further, suggesting rurally inclined investors "buy a farm and learn to drive a tractor."
From a policy perspective, many countries are seeking to limit exports to ease food shortages at home. While this may appear an immediate solution to the escalating food prices, the International Food Policy Research Institute argues this could aggravate rather than improve world commodity markets.
A 'starve your neighbor' policy would inevitably make prices more volatile since countries would trade smaller shares of total world production of agricultural products, IFPRI director general Joachim von Braun says. The answer lies in "freer trade … especially when we have scarcity" and as the world’s biggest economy, the onus is on the U.S. to do everything in its power to push stalled world trade talks to a conclusion, according to von Braun.
Food for thought for the incoming administration.
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