Bank of England chief warns of food price 'apocalypse'

·2-min read
Bank of England chief warns of food price 'apocalypse'
Bank of England chief warns of food price 'apocalypse'

THE HEAD of the Bank of England has given an 'apocalyptic' outlook about food price rises.

Andrew Bailey was giving evidence to the Treasury committee in Westminster when he raised concerns about food prices.

His remarks come in the context of a UK-wide cost of living crisis, which has seen energy prices soar by 54 per cent, and some foodstuffs rising drastically in price.

The price of chicken, for example, has risen by 19% and milk by 24% in the last year.

Mr Bailey told MPs the conflict in Ukraine will continue to impact global food prices, with the country being a major producer of wheat.

He said the potential for further food inflation is a “major worry”, explaining: "Ukraine and Russia is the big risk in a way.

“One is the risk of a further energy price shock, which would come from the cutting off of gas and distillates, such as products like diesel.

“And then, the one which I might sound rather apocalyptic about, is food.

“Two things the finance minister said is that there is food in store but they can’t get it out.

“While he was optimistic about crop planting, as a major supplier of wheat and cooking oil, he said we have no way of shipping it out and that is getting worse.

“It is a major worry for this country and a major worry for the developing world.”

Mr Bailey also said those on high salaries should think twice before asking their employers for large wage increases.

He said: "I do think people, particularly people who are on higher earnings, should think and reflect on asking for high wage increases.

“It’s a societal question. But I am not preaching about this. I was asked if I have taken a pay rise myself this year and I said no, I had asked the Bank not to give me one, because I felt that was the right thing for me personally.

“But everybody must make their own judgement on that. It’s not for me to go around telling people what to do.

“In that sense I know I may have been interpreted as doing that, but I wasn’t. What I was saying is that maybe people should reflect on it, particularly people in that situation.”