Explained: Global Wheat Crisis

Wheat Crisis

Wheat is a key global commodity in terms of tradeable value and as a staple in the household diet. Many factors affect global wheat crisis prices which include climate, yields, oil prices, lagged prices, and imports. In addition to gradual and consistent increasing global wheat demand, these market drivers are posited to impact world prices and food security.

The international agricultural research agenda on climate-smart agriculture (CSA) explored the intersection of climate change, the re-orientation of food production systems, and food security as a core mission of its program.

Such priorities are a result of tension between natural resources and food production systems due to the perception of increasing scarcity of resources. Clearly, the demand for all food grains grows with an increase in both the world population and the wealth of developing countries whereas the supplies of natural resources are limited. The tension between these markets and resource systems is enhanced by concerns about how climate resiliency may impact natural resource stocks and flows.

Why there’s a huge crisis of Wheat in the Global Market?

Before the Russia-Ukraine war which nearly started three months ago, the two countries supplied about one-third of the global annual wheat sale. They also supplied 55% of sunflower oil and over 15% of maize and barley.

The war has badly disturbed the supply chain. Prices of grains have been increasing ever since the Ukraine war began. And in the mid of rising domestic inflation, the Indian government decided to ban unapproved wheat exports. This huge step came in sharp contrast to India’s stand-in April during the Modi-Biden meet and at the UN. This also drew negative judgment from the agriculture ministers of the Group of Seven nations (G7), who said that such measures would make the world’s crisis worse.

India’s decision to halt wheat exports came as unexpected and a record-breaking heatwave desiccated the crop during a crucial period, spurring estimated the collapsing yields. On the other hand, India prioritized its domestic market, even as the move risks tarnishing its international image as a reliable supplier. The output of the risk taken has created a dilemma for India, which has tried to fill the gap as the shortfall in Ukraine’s exports push buyers toward alternative origins.

What are the ways to halt Global Wheat Crises?

The government has revised the grain allocation under PMGKAY for May to September 2022. According to the new guidelines, the FCI will fill the gap left by wheat with a hype allocation of rice gains. An additional 5.5 MT rice is being allocated to the States to fill the gap in supplying wheat grain. India will also approve exports to countries that require wheat for food security needs and based on the requests of their governments, will also allow shipments for which irrevocable letters of credit have already been issued.

Other ways to control future halt in Global Food Crises are:-

  1. Dietary patterns

It is especially important that meat consumption and excess calories in countries with high levels of meat consumption and obesity are reduced.

  1. Production practices

Greater organic and agroecological strategies should be prioritized over highly industrialized farming practices.

  1. Supply chains

Large quantities of food are needed for any city region – Example: an American city region of a million people will require about 900m kg of food annually.

  1. Food waste

Although food is lost throughout the supply chain, it’s estimated the greatest losses occur at the consumer level in the global north.

  1. Concentrated production

Some crops are grown in an intensely concentrated manner, which leaves them vulnerable to climate changes and pests.


Global food security efforts increasingly focus on the adaptation of agriculture to climate concerns, but it is clear that there are also political, economic, and cultural considerations for the effectiveness of such adaptation strategies. The article explores the factors that impact wheat prices in the international market, focusing on what may have contributed most to the rapid growth in world wheat prices, as well as subsequent price fluctuations, and also evaluates a variety of the key factors affecting wheat production and prices, limitations remain. Climate change is a complex phenomenon and merits continued study and the inclusion of factors beyond precipitation patterns when investigating climate resiliency in the wheat market.

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