The world has about 10 weeks of wheat reserves in storage as the Ukraine war enters its fourth month. These are the estimates made by an expert on food supplies at the UN. However, other factors also contribute to this situation, such as the drought in the main producing regions.
Sara Menker, CEO of the agricultural analysis company Gro Intelligence, has testified before the UN Security Council that the war between Russia and Ukraine was not the cause of a food security crisis, but “just added fuel to the fire that had already been burning for a long time”.
Ukraine is considered the “barn” of the world and Russia and Ukraine together account for nearly a third of world wheat exports.
According to the British newspaper The Telegraph, the UN has already been alerted that world wheat inventories have fallen to its lowest level since 2008 because the supply of this grain has been affected by a “once in a generation event”.
This comes as US Secretary of State Antony Blinken accuses Russia of using food as a weapon. Blinken, who has also addressed the UN Security Council, has said that Russia was holding the food “hostage” not only of Ukrainians, but of millions of people around the world.
“The Russian government seems to think that using food as a weapon will help achieve what its invasion has failed to do: break the spirit of the Ukrainian people,” Blinken said.
Menker has said that droughts around the world are contributing to the decline of wheat resources. Menker has pointed out that the global food supply is also being affected by climate change and fertilizer shortages.
“At the moment We only have 10 weeks of global consumption in inventories around the world. Current conditions are worse than those experienced in 2007 and 2008“, has explained.
Menker has assured that estimates from official government agencies around the world show wheat inventories at 33% of annual consumption, but adds that models created by Gro Intelligence show that the figure may actually be closer. 20%, a level not seen since 2007 and 2008.
“It is important to note that the lowest levels of grain inventories the world has seen are now taking place while access to fertilizers is very limited,” he says. “Y drought in wheat-producing regions around the world is the most extreme in more than 20 years“.
However, the situation does not stop there, because a similar concern weighs on stocks of corn and other cereals.
Reference article: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2022/05/20/world-has-just-ten-weeks-worth-wheat-left-ukraine-war/
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