Recent years have seen increasing average food prices, severe food price
shocks (in 2007/8 and 2010/11), and increasing concerns about the
impacts of food prices shocks, high food prices and food price
volatility on poor and food insecure people. However, while there is
general agreement that food price volatility leads to inefficient
resource allocations and adjustment costs, and that high prices are bad
for the urban poor (with large staple food expenditures), there has been
more debate on the impacts of high food prices on the rural poor.
This policy brief
draws on basic microeconomic theory on the different meanings and
effects of changes in staple food prices to different consumers and
reviews empirical evidence of the effects of the 2008 food price spike
on different people.
Dorward, A. Policy Brief No. 52. The short and medium term impacts of rises in staple food prices. Future Agricultures Consortium, Brighton, UK (2012) 7 pp.