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Published: Thursday, 5/12/2011

Surge in food prices could fall later in ’11

BLADE STAFF AND NEWS SERVICES

ST. LOUIS — The fast rise in food prices could begin to slow later this year.

The government’s latest crop report estimates the domestic supply of corn, which had been forecast to shrink, will grow in the months ahead. The Department of Agriculture report suggested the high price of corn is prompting ranchers and feed makers to use less and farmers to plant more.

Analysts expect these trends to push corn prices lower. And this could make everything from beef to cereal to soft drinks less expensive at the supermarket.

Corn prices fell sharply last week as part of a broader sell-off in commodities. The USDA estimates corn exports will drop by about 50 million bushels this summer. At the same time, farmers are planting more of it.



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