Food prices rise yet further
Although food was spared the VAT rise to 20%, it is still going to cost more due to global weather conditions and other untimely factors. In the US the price of corn and wheat went up after harvests were ‘slashed’ by bad weather conditions. Fires in Russia cut wheat production there by 25%, while the rising cost of oil inevitably has a knock-on effect for food production. Continue reading
Tag Archives: food inflation
Food prices rise yet further
THIS YEAR’S BIG STORIES
Food inflation was an all too regular topic on this blog, with the doom-mongers telling us almost weekly how a carrot was soon going to cost the same as a small dog. It was revealed that food prices had risen at twice the rate in the UK as in the rest of Europe. Then in October inflation hit a 15-month high after rises in the cost of wheat and oil.
It was a bad year for Gordon Ramsay. Pub after pub after restaurant closed down. He re-opened Petrus only to have it almost universally panned. Then he was done for employing illegal immigrants. He acrimoniously split with his business partner and father-in-law Chris Hutcheson, before sending what can only be described as a batshit mental open letter to his mother-in-law. Then he was sued for pulling out of a speaking tour in New Zealand. And this week it was revealed that he’d had a hair transplant. Let’s hope he regains some semblance of dignity in 2011.
Cloned meat given the go-ahead
It was the year in which scientists OK’d the production and sale of cloned meat and milk. Campaigners were, predictably, horrified by this, claiming insufficient research had been done in the field. The palaver began in the summer, when it was revealed that cloned meat had been sold to consumers. In November scientists suggested the meat was ‘unlikely‘ to pose any problems. Sounds like sufficient research to me.
We need to look after our fish
With news in May that the decline of UK fish stocks is worse than previously thought, it is clearer than ever that we ought to be more concerned about our fish. Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall launched his Fish Fight campaign to curb the cuckoo practice of ‘discards’, and we found out that even species as ‘plentiful’ as mackerel are being overfished.
* Cider tax is scrapped.
* English sparkling wine beats champagne.
* And Cornish Blue wins at World Cheese Awards.
* Tourists come to Britain for its food.
* Jamie Oliver breaks publishing records.
* Kraft takeover of Cadbury mired in controversy.
* Health benefits of organic food questioned.
* Junk food kills 40,000 people a year.
* Take caution over promises of ‘local’ and ‘fresh’.
* Processed food is destroying our taste buds.
* Village life dying out as country pubs close.
* Biodegradable crisp packets abandoned for being too noisy.
* Water from glacier goes on sale. At £6 a bottle.
* Pizzas in Naples fired with wood made from coffins.
* A sandwich in a can. A candwich.
* Pea plant grows inside man’s lung.
* Deep-fried beer invented in Texas.
* The Berlin ‘cannibal’ restaurant that was exposed as a fake.
* Woman fends off bear attack with a courgette.
* A mouse is found baked into a loaf of bread.
* Fat people can sniff out food better.
* A man ate nothing but potatoes for 2 months.
* A wild boar attacked a butcher in Germany. Bad move.
BEST BITS OF THE YEAR
Cassoulet at Les Deux Salons
Basil Grande at Casita
Controversy in British egg week
While the Co-op is patting itself on the back for its egg-based animal welfare award, Sky news has unearthed a less savoury side to ‘free range’ farming. An investigation into Noble Foods suggests the farm – or is that firm? – is playing fast and loose with the term ‘free range’, with birds kept indoors until laying, and parasites nibbling at the hens.
Shoppers are being hit the hardest as the cost of food and clothing continues to climb. Rising prices in wheat and oil have had a knock on effect on the price of bread and meat, say the British Retail Consortium, leading to last month’s rise of 0.2% from August. Tesco’s big cheese Terry Leahy played down fears, saying inflation was unlikely to reach the heights of 2007.
Three-course meal in a stick of gum
You couldn’t make it up. Well, I say that, judge for yourself. According to the Daily Mail, scientists are working on a Willy Wonka-style sweet that can give the sensation of eating three separate courses. Click on the above link for the science mumbo jumbo, but it all seems like an extravagant waste of time and resources.
Other food news this week:
* ‘Healthy’ purple potato goes on sale in UK.
* Frog finds woman in bottle of wine. Or something.
* Biodegradable crisp packets deemed ‘too noisy’.
* Hundreds of bad pubs blacklisted.
* Johnny Depp doesn’t like British food. Prefers Wagamama instead. Ouch.
Piece of the week:
* Simon Majumdar discusses children in restaurants on the Guardian Word of Mouth blog.
Recipe of the week:
* Crispy fried lamb tongues from Lemon Basil. Drool.
Video of the week:
This is the weirdest advert I’ve seen in a long time:
And don’t forget, you could win an frigging great ostrich egg and a bottle of champagne. Send me your best egg recipe before Sunday night.
Artificial meat to solve food shortage
If the doommongers are accurate – and it seems they might be – we are, in the not too distant future, going to run out of food. Creating ‘meat’ in a giant vat could be one solution, say scientists. Other options are genetically modifying animals and plants in order to increase their yield and ‘efficiency’. Neither option is particularly appealing, but at some point we’re going to have to put principles to one side and get on with it. Continue reading
Food inflation rises
After February’s drop in food inflation, this month the price of fruit has nudged food inflation up to a 6 month high, reports the Grocer. Quite how the eruption of Eyjafjallajokullasoiasdgonyeos will impact on this is unclear, with some suggesting a food shortage is likely and others observing that a relatively small proportion of our grub comes via air freight. Either way, best to avoid them Kenyan beans and buy British when you can.
Loyalty cards come under scrutiny
We’ve all been there. Months – nay – years of accumulating these mythical, intangible points. Finally the day arrives when you think to yourself ‘you know what, I’m just going to fly by the seat of my pants and ruddy well use my Nectar card points today’. And then you’re told you have 79p on it. A YouGov poll found that half of shoppers thought them a waste of time. What do you think?
Latest health scare – well-done meat a cancer risk
Research in Texas has found that eating well-done meat more than doubles the risk of bladder cancer. Though mainly referring to red meat, the study also suggested that even eating fried chicken or fish ‘significantly raised the odds of cancer’. How do you like your meat cooked?
Other food news this week:
* Christie’s auction house accused of selling ‘fake’ vintage wines, reports the Independent.
* BNP cause scandal at Unilever by using Marmite in an online political broadcast. Read more here.
* There’s been a rise in the use of ‘lazy’ foods such as ready-peeled carrots. Do you use them?
* Red Bull to blame, says Hull Asbo woman.
Blog of the week: Cheese and Biscuit’s review of The Fat Duck was refreshingly lacking in any bombast or verbosity.
Recipe of the week: A D-Lish looking midweek supper recipe of Old Bay seasoned crispy crumb chicken from A Glug of Oil.
Videos of the week: Two stunning and emotionally charged covers of Lady Gaga’s ubiquitous ballad ‘Poker Face’.