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Extreme weather - Soaring food commodities

From sugar and wheat to heating oil and orange juice


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15 Dec 10 - "Around the globe, extreme weather has driven up prices for commodities from sugar and wheat to heating oil and orange juice," says this article from Reuters.

After the wettest spring on record in the east, Australia's waterlogged wheat crop is suffering, as is sugar cane, while drought in the west has cut the annual wheat yield by two-thirds.

In Brazil, dryness has hurt yields and cut the volume of cane.

In India, ICE sugar futures hover near a 30-year high.

In China, dry late fall weather may have affected pre-winter development of wheat in some areas.

In Italy, snowfall is contributing to sowing delays that threaten the next crop, and prices soared after a severe drought curbed wheat supply from the Black Sea region.

In the United States, ice on key shipping waterways has slowed the flow of corn and soybean barges, and may close northern sections of the Illinois River later this week.

U.S. orange juice futures reached a 3-1/2 year peak early this week, and citrus growers in Florida said their groves got mauled by sub-freezing weather overnight.

Meanwhile, U.S., heating oil futures hovered near 26-month highs as bitter cold descended on the heavily populated U.S. Northeast, the world's biggest consumer of the wintertime fuel.

French power usage hit an all-time high Tuesday as temperatures dipped below zero, forcing households to turn up their heating. A new peak was expected Wednesday.

European spot power prices doubled over the past days.

In China, some parts of the country could run short of coal, oil, power or gas during the next few winter months.

In Argentina, the La Nina weather anomaly could cause even worse damage to corn and soy crops yields next year, a climate specialist said.

See entire article:
Thanks to Tom McHart for this link





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