A past few years, Sir John Beddington, the chief advisor of UK government stated that with the rapidly growing population and scarcity of food and water supply, there will be a ‘perfect storm’ out of these factors in 2030 that will result in food shortage and riots. However, his optimism towards the timing was disbelieved by the New England Complex Systems Institute as the complexity theorists believe that if the present phenomenon remains unchanged i.e. they need to reverse the current trend in food prices until 2013 or else food riots will grip the planet.
Marco Lagi with his team from New England believes that the price of food is the only single factor that will trigger the riots around the world. Lagi and his team feel that once the price of food crosses the limits, social unrest will sweep several countries, especially the poorer ones.
United Nations and the Food and Agriculture Organization have set the food prices against the period of the riots around the world. The Lagi and his team proved their belief with the help of the evidence collected from the organization. The team also designed a graph to show that when the price of food rises to a certain point, riots occur.
A saying “every society is only three meals away from revolution” is believed easily. The food crisis will drive people to take extreme measures. However, Lagi and his team do not stand by this conclusion. They say that rising food prices will alone not lead to riots. In fact, high prices will only be responsible for creating conditions which will cause social disruptions. Lagi said to Technology Review,” These observations are consistent with a hypothesis that high global food prices are a precipitating condition for social unrest”. The more the speculation of traders, the more gradually the food prices rise. This condition is even going worst by the deregulation of the commodities markets and also by removing the trading limits for buyers and sellers.
The western world, especially US is responsible for subsidies which encourage the conversion of corn into ethanol. In order to prevent the planet from global crisis, major changes have to be made.