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Italy’s Confagricoltura Sees Risk of Food Riots on Harvest Slump

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July 30 (Bloomberg) -- An expected slump in global grain production on drought in the U.S, the Black Sea region and Europe may cause shortages and food riots in the Middle East, Italian farm-industry organization Confagricoltura said.

Unusual weather is “drastically compromising” the grain harvest in the Black Sea region from Russia to Ukraine and Kazakhstan, as well as in Europe, mainly in Italy but also Hungary, Romania and Serbia, the Rome-based group wrote in an e-mailed statement today.

“The climatic shocks will have a major impact on the economy and society,” Confagricoltura wrote. “The consequences risk being a shortage of food for the population and socio-political upheaval.”

Corn prices in Chicago have climbed more than 60 percent since mid-June to a record amid concern that heat and drought will reduce harvests in the U.S., as well as southern Europe and Ukraine, resulting in a draining of global stockpiles.

To contact the reporter on this story: Rudy Ruitenberg in Paris at rruitenberg@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Claudia Carpenter at ccarpenter2@bloomberg.net

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