» Monday, July 7, 2008

Food Prices

Asked on food and the Prime Minister’s suggestions in relation to food waste, and what specifically could the G8 do, the PMS replied that clearly it was a question of high food prices, and it was a matter that affected millions of families in Britain and billions of people around the world. What the Prime Minister had been saying today, and again this came up in the clip he did in the last hour or so, and what the Cabinet Office paper suggested was that there were a whole range of issues accounting for why food prices were so high and what could be done about it. This was clearly a global problem, and there was more we could do in relation to supply. Specifically the issues that would be discussed here in relation to supply would be what more we could do to increase food production in Africa. CAADP (Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme) had put forward a number of proposals in relation to what we could do to double output on key food staples in Africa in terms of more support for research, innovation, and what we could do to increase agricultural productivity in Africa. So that would form the basis of the discussions here. Of course there were issues as well on the demand side that needed to be discussed. We were publishing today our report on bio fuels, but there were issues in relation to food waste as well that we did need to have a public debate about. This was clearly a big issue for many developing countries which would form part of the discussion here. The Cabinet Office paper cites research which suggested that up to 40% of food in developing countries was lost in transport or through distribution. And clearly there were issues for the UK as well. So just as with high oil prices we needed to look not only at supply but at demand and how we could use energy more efficiently, so we needed to look at both the demand and the supply side issues of food as well.

original source.

Briefing took place at 11:00 | Search for related news

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