Speculators in the agricultural commodities markets are forcing grocery prices to rise too quickly and erratically, according to some top economists marking World Food Day on Sunday.
"Excessive financial speculation is contributing to increasing volatility and record food prices, exacerbating global hunger and poverty," wrote 461 economists, from more than 40 countries, in an open letter.
Earth from a beet field in northern France hit by drought — the country's worst in 50 years. Crop shortages in Europe and the U.S. have led some experts to predict a rise in grain prices like those that sparked riots in 2008.
Credit Philippe Huguen / AFP/Getty Images
Agriculture is topping the G-20 agenda for the first time as agriculture ministers from the world's largest economies gather in Paris beginning Wednesday.
Ever since a dramatic spike in world food prices in 2008 sparked panic and deadly riots in countries across three continents, agriculture and food security have become issues of global, political importance.
And crop shortages this year have some experts already predicting another rise in grain prices like that of 2008.
U.S. farmers are expected to boost the size of this year’s corn crop - a move that could potentially help to ease global food shortages by the fall. But even with record-high prices, Colorado farmers may not follow suit.