Main repercussions of rising prices of food are for those that already suffer the most from food deficits and imported petroleum in the developing world. The increased production of corn for ethanol has raised prices of corn and other foods for those could barely afford them at the beginning.
The World Bank has estimated that in 2001, 2.7 billion people were living on less than $2 a day. The world's poorest people are already spending 50 to 80 percent of their total household income on food. The increase in prices of corn, oilseeds, and other grains will have a shocking effect on these people, and could mean malnutrition and starvation for many of them. The World Bank has conducted studies which suggest that caloric consumption among the poor decreases by about ½ percent whenever the prices of major food staples increase by one percent.
The International Food Policy Research Institute suggests that the number of food-insecure people in the world would rise by over 16 million for every percentage increase in the real prices of staple foods.
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On the plantations where biofuels are typically grown, workers are often exploited and have to work for long hours under the sun without the proper clothing and for a minimum wage. The spread of agrofuel plantation weakens rural economies and pushes people into the cities were they suffer from unemployment and often live on precarious conditions. Communities are forced out of their lands and governments are characterized by their lack of concern; "In Tanzania, more than 11, 000 people have been evicted from one agrofuel plantation alone."
Finally, there are speculations on the effects of ethanol production on further availability of water. It takes almost a thousand gallons of water to produce 4 cups of sugar cane derived ethanol.
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