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Runaway growth of foodstuffs

“Runaway growth of foodstuffs” literally means “the price of foodstuffs goes up”.
Recently, the price of foodstuffs has been increasing especially in the past years due to the rise in the price of foodstuffs in world economy.

However, Japanese people don’t seem to have noticed.
Mass Communications didn’t report at all, and we don’t realize the boost in the prices of foodstuffs.

This is because Japanese economy was appreciating strong yen at that time. The appreciating yen prevented us from noticing runaway growth of foodstuffs.

Using a concrete example, let’s consider about cereal.
Before many Japanese noticed, the price of cereal crops had been increasing all over the world due to runaway growth of foodstuffs.
At that time, the appreciating yen happened accidentally.
If the appreciating yen happens, the value of the yen increases, the price of cereal crops imported from foreign countries increases.
But, the price of imported cereal crops doesn’t decrease because of runaway growth of foodstuffs.

So, only cattle farmers who import lots of cereal crops for their barn animals are wondering about the price of imported cereal crops.

Most Japanese don’t notice this “runaway growth of foodstuffs” because of the appreciating yen.
If the appreciating yen hadn’t advanced this much, the increasing of the transaction prices of cereal crops would have influenced to Japanese tables.

According to FAO(Food and Agriculture Organization), FFPI(FAO Food Price Index) grew up 32% in the last half of 2010, and in January 2011, it grew up to the greatest value.
At this point, it can’t seem to be a temporary rise.

In past time, “runaway growth of foodstuffs” happened in 2008.
At that time, the price of cereal crops increased followed by running up of the price of common wheat, and after Lehman’s fall in autumn, they decreased.
But, though the price fell, it was still higher than before.
In short, it stayed at high price to some extent.

From this, we can learn that the price of foodstuffs has continued to increase and decrease, and as a result, it goes up higher.


FAOFood and Agriculture Organization
FAO is one of UN’s professional bodies whose purpose is to end hunger. Its headquarter is located in Rome in Italy.

FFPIFAO Food Price Index
FFPI is a index of the world price of foodstuffs composed of five groups, including edible meat, milk product, cereal crop, oilseed, and sugar.

Lehman's fall
Lehman's fall is the world recession and banking crisis caused by the breakdown of Lehman Brothers, an American leading securities and investment company.

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