Climate: why food prices are expected to rise in the coming years

Global warming and heat waves will cause food prices to rise even further in the coming years, with Southern countries being the most affected, according to a study published on Thursday.

Increase of up to 1.5 points

The impact will vary depending on seasons and regions. But the increase in temperatures projected for 2035 will cause an average increase in food prices of 1.49 percentage points per year in the best of cases, calculate the authors of the study published in Communications Earth and Environment, a journal of the Springer Nature scientific publisher. .

In the worst case, the increase would be 1.79 percentage points. The effect on general inflation would be 0.76 and 0.91 percentage points, respectively.

By comparing historical data on prices and climate conditions for 121 countries between 1991 and 2020, “We find strong evidence that higher temperatures, especially in summer and in warm regions, cause food price increases.“, one of the authors of the study, Maximilian Kotz, summarized to AFP.

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The researchers, from the University of Potsdam and the European Central Bank, extrapolated this data based on predicted future climate conditions, between 2035 and 2060.

These last “will likely lead to increases in food inflation and headline inflation around the world, particularly in already warmer regions, i.e. the southern hemisphere.“said Maximilian Kotz.

The southern hemisphere, the most affected

Africa and South America will be the most affected continents. In the northern hemisphere, rising temperatures will drive up prices.”especially in summer“he added.

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However, the researchers found no significant impact of global warming on the other components of household spending, except electricity prices. That’s enough “consistent“with studies showing that”Agriculture is particularly sensitive to climate impacts.“said Maximilian Kotz.

The study authors also looked more specifically at the impact of the heat wave in Europe in the summer of 2022, which likely caused food inflation to increase by 0.67 percentage points, with a larger and more significant impact in southern Europe. Europe.

Climate change will amplify the scope of these extreme heat events and, therefore, their possible impact on inflation.“, highlights the study.

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