Will a wheat rust that the vast majority of Americans have never heard of lead to a catastrophic global famine? Agricultural scientists now fear that Ug99, a devastating wheat fungus also known as stem rust, could wipe out over 80 percent of the world’s wheat crop as it spreads from Africa all across the globe. In a world already on the verge of a massive food crisis, this is incredibly frightening news. Most Americans have never even heard of Ug99, but the truth is that it is considered by experts to be the most serious threat to the world food supply. Ug99 is known as “stem rust” because it produces reddish-brown flakes on wheat stalks. It is incredibly deadly and there is no known cure for it.
The Los Angeles Times recently reported that The International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center in Mexico now estimates that 19 percent of the world’s wheat crop, primarily located in Asia and Africa, is in imminent danger from Ug99. If Ug99 were to start spreading in the United States, it is estimated that approximately 10 billion dollars worth of wheat would be destroyed.
10 billion dollars.
That is a whole lot of bread.
The L.A. Times also reports that Rick Ward, the coordinator of the Durable Rust Resistance in Wheat project at Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y., says that “A significant humanitarian crisis is inevitable.”
Did you catch that?
He said inevitable.
When scientists start using the word “inevitable” it is time for all of us to sit up and take notice.
Apparently Ug99 has already jumped the Red Sea and has affected areas as far as Iran already.
Wheat Experts say that wheat rust is poised to enter northern India and Pakistan, and that the wind will inevitably carry it to Russia, China and even North America.
If it doesn’t arrive in North America some other way first.
Jim Peterson, a professor of wheat breeding and genetics at Oregon State University in Corvallis, does not sound optimistic about this crisis:
“It’s a time bomb,” he told the L.A. Times.
“It moves in the air, it can move in clothing on an airplane. We know it’s going to be here. It’s a matter of how long it’s going to take.”
Are you all starting to get the picture?
This is very, very serious.
If the worst case scenario comes to fruition, and 80 percent of the world’s wheat crop is destroyed, what will you and your family do?
Do you have an emergency food supply?
As if things were not bad enough, wheat experts say that Ug99 is becoming even more virulent as it spreads.
This quote from the recent L.A. Times article on Ug99 is very frightening…..
Scientists discovered a Ug99 variant in 2006 that can defeat Sr24, a resistance gene that protects Great Plains wheat. Last year, another variant was found with immunity to Sr36, a gene that safeguards Eastern wheat.
It is not like the world has enough wheat right now anyway.
The truth is that exploding populations, record droughts across the globe and dwindling strategic food reserves in the major industrialized nations have brought the world to the very edge of a catastrophic global food crisis.
World food reserves currently sit at a fifty year low, and many experts are warning that we are now facing a “perfect storm” that will cause a dramatic spike in world hunger.
Even the major industrialized nations are not immune. With U.S. wheat reserves now at a record low, USDA Undersecretary Mark Keenum had to admit last year: “Our cupboard is bare.”
Things have become so serious that even Time magazine has now declared that we are in “a global food crisis”.
Most Americans would like to think that “wealthy nations” such as the United States are completely immune from world famine, but the truth is that the U.S. only has enough wheat held in reserve to make half a loaf of bread for each citizen.
Half a loaf of bread.
How long do you think that will last you and your family if Ug99 sweeps the globe?
If you won’t listen to us, perhaps you will listen to the United Nations.
In a stunning new report, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations is warning that impoverished populations around the globe are feeling the pain of much higher food prices. The price of important crops such as rice, which is a key staple in many impoverished nations, spiked more than 400 percent last year. In fact, food riots broke out in many third world countries in 2008 when large numbers of people could suddenly not feed their families.
The effects of food shortages are not being seriously felt yet in the major industrialized nations where food represents about 10 to 20 percent of consumer spending, but in developing nations the poor often have to spend up to 80 percent of their meager income just on food.
Britain’s chief scientist, Professor John Beddington, says that the global demand for food is going to increase by about 50 percent by 2030, and that this will cause massive global problems of unprecedented magnitude in the years ahead.
“It’s a perfect storm,” he told the GovNet Communications Sustainable Development 09 conference in London. “We’re not growing enough food, so we’re not able to put stuff into the reserves.”
And his pessimistic forecast does not even include the impact of Ug99 on the world food supply.
The reality is that the world is quickly running out of food and more people than ever are hungry. Just consider these facts…..
*1 billion people in the world go to bed hungry every single night.
*Every 3.6 seconds someone starves to death and 3/4 are children under the age of 5.
*More than 2.8 billion people, close to half of the world’s population, live on less than the equivalent of $2 a day.
*About a third of all children in the world under the age of five suffer from serious malnutrition.
*The top fifth (20 per cent) of the world’s people who live in the highest income countries have access to 86 percent of world gross domestic product. The bottom fifth, in the poorest countries, have about one percent.
*The assets of the world’s three richest men exceed the combined gross domestic products of the world’s 48 poorest countries.
When you add all of this up, the reality is that we could very well be on the verge of the worst global famine in the history of humanity.
If we are to take the scientists and the government experts seriously, then it is very likely that there will come a day when you will not be able to run down to the local Wal-Mart or the local McDonald’s and grab all of the food that you want.
Food shortages are coming. Will you and your family be ready with an emergency food supply?
For those of you who are interested in preparing, we encourage you to check out the links and resources that we have provided for you on this site.
Let us hope and pray that things will not be as bad as scientists now fear they may be.
But if a devastating global famine does strike, you and your family will be in a much better position if you have stored up a year or two of emergency food. Now is the time to build up your emergency food supply.