Marc Chandler submits:In a time when there is much discussion of peak oil and the idea that other commodities are less abundant or more costly to access, one issue that might not get enough attention among investors is the shortage of water. Some political scientists, for example, have suggested that the next war in the Middle East may be over water, not oil. Grain is very water-intensive. Roughly speaking, it takes 1,000 tons (100 cubic meters) to grow a ton of grain.
Chris Damas submits:
I have a small news clipping saved on my desk (from the AFP newswire) about the Russian drought. It’s dated July 11, 2010 and I plan to paste it to my forehead this weekend. Because I didn’t pay enough attention to it. The small clipping has became a big story over the past 2 days.
MUCH of America's agricultural heartland is in the grips of extreme to exceptional drought. It is becoming increasingly clear that this drought will take a significant toll on some of the nation's principal food crops, especially corn, wheat, and soybeans.
By Paulo Santos:Along with corn (CORN), wheat (WEAT) has been on a tear. One might think that the hot, dry June weather was to blame, that the wheat was wilting in the fields. But there's just one problem ...
Yu Ruicheng's weathered face creases with worry as she stands on her dry wheat field in eastern China, where a record drought is threatening to send soaring global food prices even higher."If it doesn't rain next month, we won't harvest anything," the 62-year-old farmer says, crouching down and sifting parched soil through her fingers, pointing to dried-up wheat shoots scattered across her plot of land.
Russia's drought and massive wildfires have sent wheat prices through the roof. Fortunately, most U.S. wheat farmers have had a stellar harvest and are likely to help meet global demand. That's especially the case in Colorado, which exports 80 percent of the wheat it produces.» E-Mail This » Add to Del.icio.us