Perhaps central bankers are like potted plants, able to subsist on little more than water and sunlight. That would help explain Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke's statement Thursday that -- rising commodity prices notwithstanding -- overall inflation remains "quite low." As for folks who eat food, well, global food prices hit an all-time high last month, in both nominal and inflation-adjusted terms, according to the U.N.

True, wildfires in Russia last year, drought in the U.S. and flooding and a cyclone in Australia have helped cause price spikes for wheat and sugar. But the longer-term trend is still the same. Global food prices have increased for seven straight months, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the U.N. said Thursday, as its closely watched food price index hit its highest level ever in January.

Food Commodities Rising

"Prices of all the commodity groups monitored registered strong gains in January compared to December, except for meat, which remained unchanged," the FAO said in a release. Indeed, the index topped its prior peak set in mid-June 2008, when the global food crisis set off riots around the globe. Sugar, which has reached all-time highs, has been the main culprit this time around, but prices for cereals and oils also have gone nearly vertical since June. (See the chart below.)



So-called core inflation excludes volatile food and energy prices in an attempt to give a more accurate picture of long-term inflation. That's why Bernanke can say inflation remains muted. Take out food and gas prices, and inflation really is pretty low.

But even some bullish economists aren't buying it, like Ed Yardeni, president of Yardeni Research. He's starting to fret that Bernanke may have unleashed a global inflation beast with his second round of quantitative easing.

"Governments are scrambling to purchase more grains to quell food riots," said Ed Yardeni, president of Yardeni Research, in a Thursday note to clients. "The idea was to avert deflation and to bring back just a tiny bit of inflation. The unintended global consequences seem to be hoarding, hyper-inflating commodity prices, food riots and revolutions."

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Dereck

Major Fraud Alert


The entire Federal Banking System under FirstGov has been "Consumed" and "Levied" by way of a Maryland State Circuit/District Court Ruled “Appropriation and Garnishment” of all Future Earnings prior to and after 2004 against Bank Of America by way of the F.D.I.C. Regulations Prohibiting failing Banks from Merging with other failing Banks between the Dates of 08/04/08 and 10/09/09.

Bank of America violated the 21st Century Act: Final Amendments to Regulation CC Section: http://www.federalreserve.gov/boarddocs/press/bcreg/2004/20040726/attachment.pdf

seeking reimbursement of Credit, Loan, and Finance Balances as a "Bank Entity" and not a "Nonbank Consumer" as specified on Pages 85 and 86.

The person they sued through a LLC. Debt Collection Company and Law Firm was the "World Fortune Owner" who "Counterclaimed" and won.

Now all Contracts of any Corporations (Including Employment) under the "Controlling Interest" of any Investment Bank Worldwide are "Null and Void", and are also under the stipulated Rules and Regulations of an "Closely-held S Corporation rendering all Employed under Legal Actions against “Domination”, and also means that "No Corporation can hold Shares" officially making every Stock Exchange on the Planet a "Ponzi Scheme" by default.

Businesses owned by the States (Public Corporations) are being sold Stock Shares by Corporations also under the Federal Banking System in this Worldwide "Ponzi Scheme". The World Fortune Company Merrick Inc. Sweden is dissolving Millions and Billions of Dollars from "All Levels of Government"in the U.S. of Financing based upon Years of "negligent inaction" involving this case.

The Federal Government has already been forced to discontinue supplying the Financing States use to pay their debts, Persons in Government Offices may want to begin to take their jobs more seriously, these are different times from 10 Years ago and you will not be accepted civil servants here just because you say you are here to do the right thing.

May 29 2011 at 1:32 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
eflyers2007

For those of us that don't have money to buy gold... buy freeze dried and dehydrated food that can be stored for up to 25 years. My wife and I decided to take our entire tax return this year and spend it on food provisions. We will get a years supply of freeze dried food and hide it in our basement. Found a great deal at http://www.shelfreliancesanantonio.com. Usually we would spend the tax return on furniture or vacation… not this year. Times have changed!

February 21 2011 at 8:18 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
kimhalls123

Over the life of a 30 year loan, a $300 per month decrease would equal over $100K in savings. Search the web for "123 Mortgage Refi" website they helped me find 3.118% rate easily. Strongly recommend them for anyone.

February 07 2011 at 5:22 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Mary Finn

Increasing food prices were behind the French Revolution and they caused the Irish immigration that permanently changed the face of America as well as Ireland. This is a big deal.

February 06 2011 at 8:23 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
jmetcalf1955

perhaps the 3rd world nations should advise their populations to stop breeding like cockroaches.

February 06 2011 at 12:58 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Karl Hammerle

"Let them eat cake" Marie Antonette, Queen of France before the revolution. The price of food has been increasing for over a year. Perhaps we should cut Bernake's pay down to $30,000 a year and see what he says then. Reality would set in abruptly and he would be screaming for price controls, the final gasp of incompetent economists.

February 05 2011 at 12:38 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
gardeningatnite

We are liquidating the earth’s natural assets to fuel our consumption. Water tables are falling and wells are going dry, soil erosion exceeds soil formation on a third of world cropland, forests are shrinking, ocean fisheries are at capacity or collapsing, and ever-growing herds of cattle, sheep, and goats are converting vast stretches of grassland to desert.....

February 05 2011 at 11:35 AM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to gardeningatnite's comment
marquisdemorte

Not to mention the huge number of ever growing landfills, and the billions of tons of feces being dumped into the ocean every single day!

February 06 2011 at 3:38 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
klowrey106

Great book came out January 2011 entitled "World on the Edge" by Lester R. Brown. He is dead-on with his facts and this headline merely reinforces them. Red or Blue, it affects you...

February 05 2011 at 11:26 AM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to klowrey106's comment
gardeningatnite

Our ability to provide enough food is at stake, and depends not only on efforts within agriculture but also having an energy policy that stabilizes climate, a worldwide effort to raise water productivity, the evolution of land-efficient transport systems, and population policies...

February 05 2011 at 11:32 AM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
jvanko2284

IF SELF INTEREST IS THE DRIVING FORCE OF HUMANS.
WHY THINK A PERSON EARING OVER $250,000.00 WOULD HAVE THE SAME INTERST
AS SOMEONE EARING LESS.
FOLLOW THE PROFIT OF RISING FOOD PRICES.

February 05 2011 at 10:36 AM Report abuse +6 rate up rate down Reply
paulgrauber

http://www.opednews.com/articles/The-Egyptian-Tinderbox-Ho-by-Ellen-Brown-110204-522.html

February 05 2011 at 6:07 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply