World staring at increase in food prices

There is a grave danger that the world may face shortage of food as the conflict between Russia and Ukraine continues to escalate. Russia’s suspension of a UN-brokered deal to allow safe passage for ships carrying Ukrainian grain has the potential to increase global hunger. On Monday, US President Joe Biden issued a warning in this regard. Russia has announced that it will immediately halt participation in the agreement, alleging that Ukraine staged a drone attack on Saturday against Russia’s Black Sea Fleet ships off the coast of occupied Crimea. Ukraine has denied the attack, saying that Russia mishandled its own weapons.

The grain initiative has allowed more than 9 million tons of grain in 397 ships to safely leave Ukrainian ports since it was signed in July, and the UN chief on Friday urged Russia and Ukraine to renew the deal when it expires in late November. The grain agreement has succeeded in bringing down global food prices, which have fallen about 15 percent from their peak in March, according to the United Nations. A ship with 40,000 tons of grains bound for Ethiopia under the United Nations aid programme could not leave Ukraine on Sunday as a result of Russia’s suspension of the deal. India also needs to remain prepared, considering the latest development. The increase in global food prices will definitely have a massive impact on India. The government should prepare a contingency plan to tackle any eventuality.