We all have seen the prices continuously increase since the 2020 election at the local grocery stores. Other that the standard variations in cost of living between states and/or regions, prices on some items may vary from region to region. Some regions are closer to production areas, thus do not suffer as much impact with the supply chain problem as with those items that come from more localized central warehousing. Grocery chains that do have seasonal fruit and vegetable local suppliers suffer the least with those items grown locally, but those other items which are shipped to its regional warehouses from other sources, especially from other countries, increase much higher due to longer distance transport costs. Price increases from local growers were necessary due to the high increases in fertilizer, diesel and other Agriculture production products.
There are very few grocery chains that buy direct from local produce growers now. One is the Piggly Wiggly chain in eastern NC. The home store is in Richlands about 5 miles from my little 3 acre produce farm. I’ve made a living for the last 35 years growing and selling seasonal produce to it and four others in a 60 mile radius over the years. In the last 5 years the younger managers would rather order from central regional warehousing than deal with a bunch of local small growers, which are about extinct. I’m retired now and only have a small garden for myself, but I still raise certain plants for spring and fall planting.
Most all of my local customers in the past that bought in quantity for home canning and freezing are either dead and buried or stashed away in a Nursing home somewhere. The vast majority of the younger generations today don’t have a clue as to how to can, preserve or freeze fruits and vegetables. It used to be taught as an elective in “Home Economics”, but it went the same way as Bible classes – out.
The youngest of my two sisters made the best Strawberry Preserves! She worked on a local strawberry farm for a good number of years. The preserves aren’t as missed as she. My last major canning project was pickled Okra in 2012. Sold a lot, then stashed last few cases away. I have 2 cases of quarts left and guess what? Pickled Okra gets better with age, like wine! Just learned that something in okra can also help reduce high blood pressure. They are medicine now!
The last few times I’ve been to the grocery store, I’ve seen many folks with a shopping list, pen and calculator in hand. Have not seen a shopping list for grocery shopping since my mom did hers for our family of six with one on the way. I’m the oldest and the one on the way was my second brother. In the late 50’s and early 60’s, Dad worked two jobs and Mom raised the five children (3 boys and two girls) family. The “Baby Boomers”! Three, including myself, are still walking the earth and breathing the breath of life.
Last month, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres warned of “the specter of a global food shortage in the coming months” without intervention from international leaders. According to UN figures, the number of severely food-insecure people has doubled in the past two years, from 135 million pre-pandemic to 276 million today.
In monthly cereal supply and demand estimates, the Commission cut its outlook for usable production of common wheat, or soft wheat, in the July 2022 to June 2023 season to 130.1 million tonnes from 131.3 million tonnes previously.
Actual US and UK wheat production have fell short of projections for 2022 while they have increased their exports to supplement that which is not being exported from Ukraine due to Russian’s blockade in the Black Sea and on sanctions against Russia. From “The Coming Global Food Crisis” article above:
As noted above, the Russian invasion of Ukraine has intensified the food price increases by blocking significant sources of supply of such commodities as wheat, corn, barley, and sunflower seed oil. Data from USDA (2022) suggest that in 2021, Russia and Ukraine accounted for 16.5% and 9.5% respectively of world wheat exports. Ukraine is also a major exporter of corn with about 23.9% of the world market in 2021 (USDA 2022). Data from the FAO show that Ukraine accounted for 42.2% of world sunflower seed oil exports in 2019 (FAOSTAT 2022). Food shipments from Ukraine’s main ports have been blocked by a Russian blockade and grain stocks within Ukraine have been destroyed or seized by Russian troops. The winter wheat harvest and planting for the new season in Ukraine have been slowed by the conflict and the widespread distribution of land mines and unexploded artillery shells (New York Times 2022). In addition to pressures on food supplies stemming from the war, Russia and Ukraine are major producers and exporters of fertilizers, with Russia producing about 10% of world nitrogen fertilizer (Hammond and Gadanakis 2022). Rising input costs including those for both fertilizer and energy will also contribute to upward pressures on food prices.
WASHINGTON, DC, US — In the first survey-based projection of the 2022 crop, the US Department of Agriculture in its May 12 Crop Production report forecast winter wheat production in 2022 at 1.173 billion bushels, down 103.818 million, or 8%, from 1.277 billion bushels in 2021.
One U.S. wheat highlight from USDA’s Global Grains and Oilseeds Outlook for 2022 is for increased exports. Given these predicted market factors, USDA expects the United States will end the marketing year with 19.9 MMT of wheat stocks. That is up 13% from USDA’s current prediction for 2021/22, but still less than the 5-year average.
It’s easy to do the math!
reduced production + increased exports = less wheat
There’s an old saying down on the family farm:
Don’t count ya chickens until the eggs hatch!
KJV(i) 1 And I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard, as it were the noise of thunder, one of the four beasts saying, Come and see. 2 And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer. 3 And when he had opened the second seal, I heard the second beast say, Come and see. 4 And there went out another horse that was red: and power was given to him that sat thereon to take peace from the earth, and that they should kill one another: and there was given unto him a great sword. 5 And when he had opened the third seal, I heard the third beast say, Come and see. And I beheld, and lo a black horse; and he that sat on him had a pair of balances in his hand. 6 And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts say, A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine. 7 And when he had opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth beast say, Come and see. 8 And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the beasts of the earth.
KJV(i) 11 Behold, the days come, saith the Lord GOD, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD: 12 And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the LORD, and shall not find it. 13 In that day shall the fair virgins and young men faint for thirst. 14 They that swear by the sin of Samaria, and say, Thy god, O Dan, liveth; and, The manner of Beersheba liveth; even they shall fall, and never rise up again.
KJV(i) 1 Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in my holy mountain: let all the inhabitants of the land tremble: for the day of the LORD cometh, for it is nigh at hand; 2 A day of darkness and of gloominess, a day of clouds and of thick darkness, as the morning spread upon the mountains: a great people and a strong; there hath not been ever the like, neither shall be any more after it, even to the years of many generations. 3 A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them. 4 The appearance of them is as the appearance of horses; and as horsemen, so shall they run. 5 Like the noise of chariots on the tops of mountains shall they leap, like the noise of a flame of fire that devoureth the stubble, as a strong people set in battle array. 6 Before their face the people shall be much pained: all faces shall gather blackness. 7 They shall run like mighty men; they shall climb the wall like men of war; and they shall march every one on his ways, and they shall not break their ranks: 8 Neither shall one thrust another; they shall walk every one in his path: and when they fall upon the sword, they shall not be wounded. 9 They shall run to and fro in the city; they shall run upon the wall, they shall climb up upon the houses; they shall enter in at the windows like a thief. 10 The earth shall quake before them; the heavens shall tremble: the sun and the moon shall be dark, and the stars shall withdraw their shining: 11 And the LORD shall utter his voice before his army: for his camp is very great: for he is strong that executeth his word: for the day of the LORD is great and very terrible; and who can abide it?
KJV(i) 7 Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the LORD of hosts: smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered: and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones. 8 And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the LORD, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein. 9 And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The LORD is my God.
KJV(i) 1 And after these things I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory. 2 And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird. 3 For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies. 4 And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. 5 For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities. 6 Reward her even as she rewarded you, and double unto her double according to her works: in the cup which she hath filled fill to her double. 7 How much she hath glorified herself, and lived deliciously, so much torment and sorrow give her: for she saith in her heart, I sit a queen, and am no widow, and shall see no sorrow. 8 Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning, and famine; and she shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her. 9 And the kings of the earth, who have committed fornication and lived deliciously with her, shall bewail her, and lament for her, when they shall see the smoke of her burning, 10 Standing afar off for the fear of her torment, saying, Alas, alas that great city Babylon, that mighty city! for in one hour is thy judgment come. 11 And the merchants of the earth shall weep and mourn over her; for no man buyeth their merchandise any more: 12 The merchandise of gold, and silver, and precious stones, and of pearls, and fine linen, and purple, and silk, and scarlet, and all thyine wood, and all manner vessels of ivory, and all manner vessels of most precious wood, and of brass, and iron, and marble, 13 And cinnamon, and odours, and ointments, and frankincense, and wine, and oil, and fine flour, and wheat, and beasts, and sheep, and horses, and chariots, and slaves, and souls of men. 14 And the fruits that thy soul lusted after are departed from thee, and all things which were dainty and goodly are departed from thee, and thou shalt find them no more at all. 15 The merchants of these things, which were made rich by her, shall stand afar off for the fear of her torment, weeping and wailing, 16 And saying, Alas, alas that great city, that was clothed in fine linen, and purple, and scarlet, and decked with gold, and precious stones, and pearls! 17 For in one hour so great riches is come to nought. And every shipmaster, and all the company in ships, and sailors, and as many as trade by sea, stood afar off, 18 And cried when they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, What city is like unto this great city! 19 And they cast dust on their heads, and cried, weeping and wailing, saying, Alas, alas that great city, wherein were made rich all that had ships in the sea by reason of her costliness! for in one hour is she made desolate. 20 Rejoice over her, thou heaven, and ye holy apostles and prophets; for God hath avenged you on her. 21 And a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and cast it into the sea, saying, Thus with violence shall that great city Babylon be thrown down, and shall be found no more at all. 22 And the voice of harpers, and musicians, and of pipers, and trumpeters, shall be heard no more at all in thee; and no craftsman, of whatsoever craft he be, shall be found any more in thee; and the sound of a millstone shall be heard no more at all in thee; 23 And the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more at all in thee: for thy merchants were the great men of the earth; . 24 And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth.