Heatwave ‘could push up food prices' as crops are withered by the sun

Rob Waugh
The UK heatwave is coming back this week – but only if you live in the south of England

Foods including bread, milk and potatoes could shoot up in price this year as farmers grapple with the effects of this summer’s drought and heatwave.

Farmers have seen crops wilt and livestock struggle with the extreme heat and lack of water – and the National Farmers’ Union has warned of price rises.

In Japan, where a deadly heatwave has gripped the country, prices of some vegetables have risen by up to 65%, according to Reuters.

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The Agricultural and Horticultural Development Board has said that it’s the driest run-up to harvest in 80 years.

Many plants stop growing when temperatures go above 25C, the Guardian reports.

Anand Dossa, economist at the NFU, said, ‘These are challenging conditions, and we would expect to see an effect.’

UK weather forecasters are predicting scorching temperatures…

What’s less clear is how much of the price increase retailers will pass on to consumers, the Guardian reported.

Weather forecasters have warned that the mercury is likely to hit 30C (86F) across the south of England by Friday, instead of being concentrated in the south east.

A spokeswoman for the Met Office said: “In terms of the weekend just gone, they were the first two days this month where temperatures haven’t reached 25C (77F) but we have got back to that point today, it hit 25.3C (77.5F) in Cavendish in Suffolk so it’s already starting to warm up again.

“Over the next few days there will be something of a north and south split – high pressure is already starting to build up in the south, bringing dry, fine and weather.”

She warned: “Southern England and Wales are going to turn quite hot by Friday – temperatures will probably reach 30C (86F) by that point.