OECD predicts up to 40 per cent grain price rises

A report released this week by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) predicts rises in wheat and grain prices of between 15% and 40%.

In research conducted with the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation, the OECD puts the rise down to the production of biofuels, which is likely to increase, the report says.

However, livestock prices are expected to rise more slowly, despite increasing demand by developing countries for meat.

The report envisages a slower growth in global agriculture output over the next 10 years compared to the previous decade. However this will still be sufficient to meet the 70% increase in world food production required by the demand from rising population levels by 2050.

The OECD's secretary-general Angel Gurría said: "Governments should implement measures to ensure that farmers have at their disposal better tools to manage future risks, such as production contracts, insurance schemes and futures markets."

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