The Global Food Crisis Is Testing Resilience Plans
Global food prices have increased significantly over the past two years, a crisis impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, extreme weather events and geopolitical challenges. And companies and countries around the world are being faced with new risks, including a significant labor shortage, as they try to get food and agricultural products to their destinations.
In this episode of Risk in Context, Marsh’s Maurits Quarles van Ufford is joined by three Marsh colleagues: Marcus Baker, Catherine Cyphus, and Nicholas Martin. They discuss the ongoing food crisis and how it is affecting individuals across the world. They also share actions that organizations can take to address these risks and help minimize the effect on people.
On the situation in the UK:
Availability of feed, fuel, and fertilizer, in particular, are straining U.K. agriculture, drastically reducing the availability and access to food. … With the cost of fertilizer up 60%, we’ll likely see farmers reducing their fertilizer use and expecting smaller crops. And as a consequence, we’re seeing prices threatening to increase.
On labor challenges in Australia:
Australia is being impacted by the global staff shortage. Border closures due to COVID-19 and in particular, Australia’s very restrictive border closures, have continued to have an impact on the ability to attract labor into the Australian market. And these restrictions have resulted in an inability to operate machinery, take crops to market, and then export overseas.
On the shipping industry:
Just under 15% of the world’s crew are either Ukrainian or Russian. And losing them from an industry that’s already a little challenged has been difficult. Because most of them are officers rather than ratings, so it has a slightly biased influence on the availability of crew.
But it’s not just about the ships. We’ve got issues in many ports around the world where you’ve just got a lack of qualified people operating cranes, actually just operating things around ports.
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