SILVER LINING IN FOOD CRISIS CLOUDS
The transformation of food from the stuff of life to gambled commodity
The gathering world food crisis is bad news for many of the world’s poor and for developing economies, but rather good news for others. Global agribusiness firms, traders and speculators are currently raking in huge profits.
Says pressure group Grain – much of the news coverage of the world food crisis has focused on riots in low-income countries, where workers and others cannot cope with skyrocketing costs of staple foods. But there is another side to the story: the big profits that are being made by huge food corporations and investors. Cargill, the world’s biggest grain trader, achieved an 86% increase in profits from commodity trading in the first quarter of this year. Bunge, another huge food trader, had a 77% increase in profits during the last quarter of last year. ADM, the second largest grain trader in the world, registered a 67% per cent increase in profits in 2007, reports Grain.