Wednesday, April 23, 2008


« Shoppers at Costco feel the first pinch of food rationing.
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Food Rationing Stuns Customers Across U.S.

April 22, 2008 | From

Once renowned for amber waves of grain, the world’s breadbasket is now facing the unthinkable: food rationing.

Stores across the nation are implementing a measure unprecedented in recent times: food rations.

The New York Sun reported Monday:

Major retailers in New York, in areas of New England, and on the West Coast are limiting purchases of flour, rice and cooking oil as demand outstrips supply. There are also anecdotal reports that some consumers are hoarding grain stocks.

At Costco stores across America, store managers have said no to shoppers wanting to purchase more than their allotted amount for certain food stuffs. “Due to the limited availability of rice, we are limiting purchases based on your prior purchasing history,” read one sign in a store in Mountain View, California. In Queens, New York, quotas are being imposed on oil and flour purchases.

For over 12 years the Trumpet has predicted that food shortages would eventually grip the United States; now, they have arrived. As Joel Hilliker stated in his column last week, “It’s easy to click away or change the channel when you’ve got plenty to eat yourself. But America is hardly invulnerable.”

Author Monica Davis also warned of the susceptibility of U.S. food supplies to shortages in the present market: “Even the United States is not immune from the potential for food shortages, food riots and food insecurity. We are just blind to the possibility.”

Government figures show that stockpiles of wheat in the U.S. have hit a 60-year low just as prices have soared. Davis also points out that “[a]lmost all other commodities, from rice and soybeans to sugar and corn, have posted triple-digit price increases in the past year or two.”

Causing much of the rise in food prices is the hike in oil prices. As oil prices increase, the demand for biofuel becomes a more attractive alternative, thus diverting many food staples, especially corn and soybeans, from the food chain. As corn is redirected to fuel production, demand for other food staples, such as rice and wheat, increases as well. This results in a food shortage across the board, as we are witnessing today.

Soon, it may not be just the pocketbook that is hurt by the food shortages, but the bellies of Americans as well, if food stops reaching the shelf. For more information on the root cause of the developing U.S. food crisis, read “When the Food Runs Out.”

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