Ukraine is shipping more grain under a U.N.-Turkey brokered deal in a hopeful sign for global food shortages. But experts caution that it may not be enough. State Department Spokesman Ned Price calls the latest grain exports from Ukraine “unambiguously a good thing”.
“Ships are once again sailing from Ukraine’s Black Sea ports. At the latest count, more than 20 ships laden with grain, laden with crops, laden with foodstuffs, have set sail from Ukraine. The vast majority of those have made it through the inspection station and are now sailing to their ultimate destinations,” he said.
But most of those ships with grain, sunflower, soy, and wheat were not headed to needy countries or carried grain stolen by Russia to ally Syria, and tonnage was far short of that in Ukraine silos.
Former USDA Chief Economist, now at the International Food Policy Research Institute, Joe Glauber told PBS’ NewsHour the answer is to end the war.
“I think, with Ukraine hampered by a war going on and the fact that they aren’t shipping as much as they could ship normally, that means lower prices for producers. That means less production. And because of the important role Ukraine plays in world markets, I think that means continued tight supplies,” he said.
Just 700,000 tons of food have left Ukraine ports versus the 20 million tons still in silos and 40 million tons of hoped-for new-harvest grain, with seasonal exports down more than half.
The NAFB contributed this story.
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National Correspondent / AgNet Media, Inc.
Sabrina Halvorson is an award-winning journalist, broadcaster, and public speaker who specializes in agriculture. She is a native of California’s agriculture-rich Central Valley.