Hundreds Of Millions Of Pigs Feared Dead From Swine Fever – Price Of Pork Has Risen 38 Percent In The Last 4 Weeks

A plague of epic proportions is ripping through the global pig population, and CNBC is warning that this unprecedented outbreak of African swine fever “could lead to significant shortages” of pork in the global marketplace.  As you will see below, the price of pork has already risen 38 percent over the last 4 weeks, and it appears inevitable that it will go a lot higher as this crisis continues to intensify.  When the first case of African swine fever was reported in China last August, nobody was really too concerned at the time.  But since then it has been spreading like wildfire, and the most recent estimates of the spread of the disease that we are getting from the experts are absolutely terrifying.

China consumes 49 percent of all pork produced in the world, and they slaughter approximately 700 million pigs a year.

So we are talking about the primary source of protein for the most populated country on the entire planet.

According to the Daily Mail, one major pork supplier has “suggested that 30-50% of Chinese pig farms have been affected by the outbreak”.  And apparently this is the primary reason why the price of pork has increased by 38 percent over the last month…

There was an 18% increase in the price of bacon from February to April this year, according to Bidfood, Beacon said, and the market price of pork has risen by 38% in the last four weeks.

The company also said another of its suppliers, Brakes, suggested that 30-50% of Chinese pig farms have been affected by the outbreak, which has increased pig prices around the world.

If what this pork supplier is claiming is true, then this plague is far, far worse than we had previously been told.

And commodities economist Arlan Suderman is giving us similar numbers.  He just told CNBC that hog feeding in China is down “at least 40%”, and in some areas he says that it is down “more than 50%”…

“What our people there in China find is a far different story where the disease is continuing to spread,” said Arlan Suderman, chief commodities economist with INTL FCStone in Kansas City, Mo. “China just doesn’t want the rest of the world to know what the situation is.”

The economist termed it “a very dire situation” and estimates hog feeding in China has fallen at least 40% and in some larger swine producing regions plummeted more than 50% in response to the disease. He said the decline is directly attributable to infected pigs dying and producers afraid of the disease and liquidating herds to salvage some value.

There is no cure for African swine fever, and when it hits a pig farm it spreads like wildfire.  In an effort to fight the spread of the disease, most of the time authorities slaughter any pigs that somehow survive.

So if 40 percent of China’s pig farms have already been essentially wiped out, we are talking about a blow to global pork production unlike anything we have ever seen before

“If we’re down 40%, that would mean on an annualized basis that they’ve lost more pork production capacity than what we produce in all of North and South America together on an annual basis,” said Suderman.

I hope that most of you are starting to grasp the implications of what I am sharing.

And China is not the only one grappling with this outbreak.  African swine fever is also devastating pig farms in Vietnam, Cambodia, Tibet and we just learned that an outbreak has now erupted in South Africa

South Africa has detected an outbreak of African swine fever on a farm in North West province, the Paris-based World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) said on Wednesday, citing a report from the South African agriculture ministry.

The outbreak killed 32 out of a herd of 36 pigs on a farm in the Ditsobotla district, with the remaining animals slaughtered, the report said.

The good news is that there haven’t been any outbreaks in the U.S. yet, and the National Pork Producers Council just canceled the World Pork Expo due to fears about the disease

The National Pork Producers Council said it would be safest for the U.S. herd to cancel the World Pork Expo, which attracts about 20,000 visitors annually to the Iowa State Fairgrounds.

Visitors attend from 40 countries, including areas that have tested positive for the disease.

“Producers have been very concerned about the risk of African swine fever,” said Jen Sorenson, vice president of the council’s board.

The United States sells approximately 20 billion dollars worth of pork annually, and so there is a tremendous amount at stake.

The Department of Homeland Security is taking this threat extremely seriously, and they are going to do all they can to keep African swine fever from crossing our borders.

But even if the disease never reaches the United States, it is still going to deeply affect us.  If the numbers that I shared with you above are accurate, that means that hundreds of millions of pigs are already dead, and this plague continues to spread.

Pork prices have already shot up, but they will never be lower than they are right now.  China and other major pork consuming nations will be trying to import all of the pork that they possibly can, and that is just going to drive the price of pork through the roof.

And for those of us that don’t eat pork, we will see prices for chicken and beef also rise as pork eaters alter their buying behavior due to rising prices.  So in the end, all forms of meat are going to become significantly more expensive.

Also, let us not forget that “as many as a million calves” were lost in the state of Nebraska alone during the recent flooding in the central United States.  That is going to drive up meat prices too.

No matter how much meat is actually produced, people are still going to be just as hungry.  If you take a basic course in economics at one of our universities, you will learn that when demand stays the same and supply goes down, prices are going to rise.

Of course if African swine fever continues to spread wildly all over the globe, eventually we are going to have a much bigger problem on our hands than just rising prices.

This is a developing story, and I will do my best to keep you updated.

Get Prepared NowAbout the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters. His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dream and The Most Important News. From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites. If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so. The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.

ANOTHER “Bomb Cyclone” Will Bring More Flooding To Parts Of The Midwest That Were Hit By A “1,000 Year Flood” Last Month

Less than a month after a “bomb cyclone” caused a “1,000 year flood” in the middle portion of the country, another “bomb cyclone” of similar strength is going to bring even more flooding to the High Plains and Upper Midwest.  According to meteorologists, it is being projected that this new “bomb cyclone” will be “similar in intensity and in snowfall” to the last one, and the latest forecast is calling for “more than 30 inches in some areas”.  The floods that we witnessed last month absolutely devastated communities throughout the region, and now it is going to happen again.  The middle part of our nation has literally never seen anything like this happen ever before, and this is easily the worst natural disaster to hit the United States since Hurricane Katrina.

Before I get into the details of the latest weather forecast, let’s review what we have witnessed so far.  “At least 1 million acres of U.S. farmland” were under water for at least 7 days last month, according to Agriculture Secretary Sunny Purdue “as many as a million calves” were lost in the flooding in the state of Nebraska alone, and hundreds of millions of dollars worth of crops were destroyed.  Thousands upon thousands of farmers were financially ruined, and thousands of farmers will not be able to plant any crops at all this year.

If you can point out a worse agricultural disaster in the last 50 years in the United States, please feel free to do so.  To my knowledge, there isn’t one.

And now a second “bomb cyclone” is on the way this week.  According to CBS News, it looks like this “bomb cyclone” will produce “a blizzard of epic proportions”…

Only three weeks after a “bomb cyclone” — one of the most intense storms on record — pummeled the Plains and Midwest, another bomb cyclone of similar strength has been forecast. This spring storm seems poised to dump even heavier snow; it could also be followed by another round of significant river flooding.

Over the past few days, various forecast computer models have shown a blizzard of epic proportions for the north-central Plain States and Upper Midwest. Every time a model is updated, the storm depicted seems to get even more intense. At this point, it seems likely that some of the same areas impacted by devastating flooding just weeks ago are about to get slammed by an historic blizzard Wednesday through Friday.

Some Midwest communities already look like they have literally been through a war.

What do you think they are going to look like after another epic blizzard and more severe flooding rips through them?

If you are not familiar with the term “bomb cyclone”, here is a pretty good explanation from MSN

A bomb cyclone is a rapid drop in air pressure — at least 24 millibars in 24 hours — and often is over or near oceans or seas because it requires warm moist air smacking into cold dry air, along with volatile weather from the jet stream. The central and mountain part of the country may get one of these every few winters, said Greg Carbin, forecast branch chief for the National Weather Service’s Weather Prediction Center in Maryland.

But this would be the second such storm in less than a month. The March 13 storm caused massive flooding in the Midwest, a blizzard in Colorado and Wyoming, and produced winds of between 96 mph and 110 mph (155 and 177.02 kph).

According to the National Weather Service, this new storm will dump a lot of snow on the northern Rockies on Tuesday, and from there it “will pick up in intensity as it moves into the central USA by Wednesday and into Thursday”.

The forecast is calling for the heaviest snow to fall in parts of Nebraska, South Dakota and Minnesota.

If you will remember, Nebraska was hit by flooding unlike anything it had ever seen before last month.  And now we are being told that this new storm “will further exacerbate flooding in Nebraska”

“This blizzard will further exacerbate flooding in Nebraska with the added insult of heavy snowfall to eventually melt,” said Ryan Maue, a meteorologist at the private weathermodels.com. “This is more bad news for suffering farmers who are unable to flip the calendar on winter.”

Even before this storm, the National Weather Service was warning that there would be “above-average precipitation across much of the Lower 48” over the next few months and that 200 million Americans were at risk of being affected by flooding.

But nobody was expecting another “bomb cyclone” to come so soon.

I have been repeatedly warning my readers that our planet is becoming increasingly unstable and that global weather patterns are really starting to go haywire.  We are seeing things happen that we have never seen before, and what I have shared in this article is yet another example.

Since January 1st, the middle portion of the country has already received approximately twice the precipitation that it normally does, and that doesn’t even count the precipitation from the “bomb cyclone” that is about to strike.

The crop losses that we have already witnessed are absolutely staggering, and now we are about to get hit with another severe blow.

Earlier today I went to the grocery store, and I was stunned by the high prices.

But the truth is that this is as low as food prices are going to get.  A series of catastrophic events threatens to significantly reduce global food production this year.  If you doubt this, just check out what has been happening in China.

We like to think that we are immune to the forces of nature that have played havoc with other societies throughout human history, but we aren’t.

Right now we are watching a great human tragedy play out in the middle portion of the country, but since we depend on them to grow much of our food, the truth is that we are all going to be feeling the pain of this tragedy in the months ahead.

Get Prepared NowAbout the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters. His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dream and The Most Important News. From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites. If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so. The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.

Midwest Apocalypse: According To Satellite Data, “At Least 1 Million Acres Of U.S. Farmland” Have Been Devastated By Floods

We have never seen anything like this before.  According to satellite data that was just released by Reuters, “at least 1 million acres of U.S. farmland” were covered by water for at least seven days this month.  That is an agricultural disaster without equal in modern American history, and yet the mainstream media is treating this like it is some sort of second class story.  It isn’t.  This is the biggest news story of 2019 so far, and people want to know what is going on.  A few days ago, I posted a story entitled ‘“As Many As A Million Calves Lost In Nebraska” – Beef Prices In The U.S. To Escalate Dramatically In The Coming Months’, and it has already been shared on social media more than 145,000 times.  Farming communities all over the central part of the nation now look like war zones as a result of all this flooding, but the media elites on the east and west coasts don’t want to write about it.  And with more flooding on the way for the next two months, this crisis is only going to get worse.

This is the time of year when farmers are gearing up to plant wheat, corn and soybeans, and now a substantial portion of our farmland will not be able to be used at all this year.  According to Reuters, at least a million acres of farmland were covered by floodwaters for at least seven days this month, and that “will likely reduce corn, wheat and soy production this year”…

At least 1 million acres (405,000 hectares) of U.S. farmland were flooded after the “bomb cyclone” storm left wide swaths of nine major grain producing states under water this month, satellite data analyzed by Gro Intelligence for Reuters showed.

Farms from the Dakotas to Missouri and beyond have been under water for a week or more, possibly impeding planting and damaging soil. The floods, which came just weeks before planting season starts in the Midwest, will likely reduce corn, wheat and soy production this year.

And with “as many as a million calves” lost to the flooding, a lot less food than anticipated is going to be produced in the United States for the foreseeable future.

Between March 8th and March 21st, almost 1.1 million acres of cropland and over 84,000 acres of pastureland were covered by water for at least a week.  With more rain on the way, it is essentially going to be impossible for most of those acres to be usable this year.

In Iowa, 474,271 acres were covered by floodwaters for at least seven days in March, and Iowa farmers are facing some very tough deadlines.  Corn must be planted by May 31st and soybeans must be planted by June 15th in order to qualify for flood insurance.  For most Iowa farms that were covered by floodwaters, that is going to be impossible.

Overall, the recent flooding caused “at least $3 billion” in economic damage according to authorities, but many believe that the final number will be far higher.

Thousands upon thousands of farms have been completely destroyed, and thousands upon thousands of farmers will not plant any crops at all this year.

In addition to the vast agricultural devastation that we have witnessed, thousands upon thousands of homes have been destroyed as well, and now the National Ground Water Association is warning that “the safety of more than a million private water wells” could be compromised…

Record flooding in the Midwest is now threatening the safety of more than a million private water wells. The National Ground Water Association estimates that people living in more than 300 counties across 10 states have their groundwater threatened from bacterial and industrial contamination carried by flood waters.

If you live in the middle of the country and there is a chance that your well may have been compromised, please don’t take any unnecessary chances.  Contaminated water can be really, really bad news.

Unfortunately, this is just the beginning.  According to the NOAA, we are entering an “unprecedented flood season” that could potentially “impact an even bigger area of cropland”

Spring floods could yet impact an even bigger area of cropland. The U.S. government’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has warned of what could be an “unprecedented flood season” as it forecasts heavy spring rains. Rivers may swell further as a deep snow pack in northern growing areas melts.

In my previous article entitled ‘”200 Million People At Risk: National Weather Service Warns Apocalyptic Midwest Floods Are “A Preview Of What We Expect Throughout The Rest Of The Spring”’, I included a map from the NOAA which shows which areas of the central part of the country are projected to receive unusually high levels of rainfall over the next few months.

Unfortunately, there is a tremendous amount of overlap with areas that have already been devastated by flooding.

On Friday and Saturday, there will be “more heavy rains” in the Midwest, and Nebraska is in “the direct path” of the center of the storm…

From the Central Plains to the Midwest, it has been a disastrous spring for river flooding. A weather system slated to bring more heavy rains Friday into Saturday could aggravate the situation along and near the Missouri and Mississippi rivers.

It’s a one-two punch that combines additional rainwater with fresh runoff from snowmelt. Perhaps worst off is Nebraska, in the direct path of Friday’s quick burst of moisture. Barely a week has passed since Gov. Pete Ricketts estimated the cost of ongoing flooding in that state at more than $1 billion.

This is it.  America is being hammered by one storm after another, and I very much encourage you to get prepared for a very rough ride ahead.

There is going to be a lot more flooding.  Prices for beef, dairy, wheat, corn and soy products are going to rise significantly, and just when you think they are way too high they are going to keep on rising.

This is already the worst agricultural disaster in modern American history, and federal authorities are telling us that we should expect things to continue to get worse for at least two more months.

Perhaps the mainstream media will eventually decide to take this story seriously, but until they do those of us in the alternative media will do our best to keep you updated.

Get Prepared NowAbout the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters. His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dream and The Most Important News. From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites. If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so. The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.

“As Many As A Million Calves Lost In Nebraska” – Beef Prices In The U.S. To Escalate Dramatically In The Coming Months

According to Agriculture Secretary Sunny Purdue, there “may be as many as a million calves lost in Nebraska” due to the catastrophic flooding that has hit the state.  This is not a rumor, this is not an exaggeration, and this is not based on any sort of speculation.  This number comes to us directly from the top agriculture official in the entire country, and it means that the economic toll from the recent floods is far greater than most of us had anticipated.  You can watch Purdue make this quote on Fox Business right here, and it is important to remember that this number is just for one state.  It is hard to imagine what the final numbers will look like when the livestock losses for all of the states affected by the flooding are tallied up.  This is already the worst agricultural disaster in modern American history, and the National Weather Service is telling us that there will be more catastrophic flooding throughout the middle portion of the nation for the next two months.

Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts says that this is the worst flooding that his state has ever experienced.  Ricketts originally told us that 65 out of the 93 counties in his state have declared a state of emergency, but that number has now risen to 74.  Hundreds of millions of dollars of damage has been done in his state alone, and that is just an initial estimate.

It deeply offends me that the big mainstream news channels have spent so little time covering this disaster.  This is the biggest news story of 2019 so far by a very wide margin, but because it happened in the middle of the country they are not giving it the attention that it deserves.

In the short-term, food prices will not rise too dramatically because the stores are selling the food that has already been produced.  But as the months roll along, you will start to notice food prices steadily increase.  Millions of bushels of wheat, corn and soybeans have been destroyed by the flooding so far, and thousands of farmers will not be able to plant crops at all this year.  And the livestock losses that we have already experienced will be felt for many years to come.

Beef will never be lower in price than it is right now.  So if you are a beef lover, you may want to stock up.

When the flooding initially came, it happened so fast that many farmers were powerless to do anything about it.  In Sherman County, farmer Richard Panowicz says that ice and debris were “exploding from the river”

“Within 15 minutes it was devastation,” Panowicz said, with water, ice and debris exploding from the river with nothing to stop it.

He described some ice chunks as 3 feet thick and the size of an extended-cab pickup.

Panowicz said a lot of the dead calves he’s picked up have had broken legs. Many of the carcasses were found by neighbors.

In other cases, farmers were faced with a heartbreaking choice between saving their animals or saving their neighbors.  One farmer that rushed to help his neighbors ended up losing 30 calves to the floodwaters

Before Mahon could think about his animals, he needed to help his neighbors. As the water rose, he rescued one with his tractor, the floodwater lifting it up and spinning him 180 degrees. He helped save three more people — including an 85-year-old woman and a 9-month-old baby — with a boat, he said.

Then he could start counting his losses. He estimated the flood carried away 30 calves and almost as many cows, nearly $50,000 out of his pocket. It might be more.

Can you imagine the grief that these farming families are enduring right now?

Many of them are financially ruined and will never be able to go back to farming again.

Dave Eaton’s family has been farming the same plot of land for 152 years.  But now the Missouri River has swallowed his farm, and with much more flooding still to come, he anticipates that his farm with be underwater “all year”

The farm has been in his family 152 years. He was born there. He’s been thinking about what he’s learned about the Missouri’s upstream reservoirs and the mountain snowpack, and what it means for his land.

“It’s not like I’m new to the area,” he said. “My gut feeling is we’re going to be under water all year.”

And he is definitely not the only one that has had his year ruined.

Panowicz says that the hay and silage that were meant to feed his cattle this season were soaked “in 3 to 4 feet of water”

The hay and silage to feed his cattle are soaked after sitting in 3 to 4 feet of water.

Sand now covers much of the pastureland he uses to graze his herd of commercial Angus cows and purebred Charolais bulls.

And 40 of his recently born calves died in the flood.

So what is he supposed to do?

Some Nebraska ranchers will bravely try to rebuild, but for Panowicz it appears that the end has come

“I’ll probably sell the (remaining) cows and calves and get out of the cattle business,” said Panowicz, 65. “I’ve been around cows since the early 1970s.”

I could go on and on, but I think that you definitely get the point.

America’s farmers have been utterly devastated.  America’s cattle producers have been utterly devastated.  Food production is going to be way, way below expectations, and food prices are going to escalate dramatically in the coming months.  This is the kind of scenario that I have been warning about, and this crisis is going to continue to get worse as all the snow from one of the snowiest winters on record melts.  In Minnesota, there are still more than 20 inches of snow on the ground in some places, and all of that water has to go somewhere.

This is the biggest national crisis that has hit the United States in many years, but the mainstream media and millions of Americans that do not live in the affected areas still do not seem to get it.

Of course once food prices start getting painfully high at our supermarkets everyone will start complaining, but there will not be any easy solutions.

About the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters. His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dream and The Most Important News. From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites. If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so. The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.

Government Warns Of Historic, Widespread Flooding “Through May” – Food Prices To Skyrocket As 1000s Of Farms Are Destroyed

We have never seen catastrophic flooding like this, and the NOAA is now telling us that there will be more major flooding for at least two more months.  On Thursday, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration warned that “historic, widespread flooding” would “continue through May”.  More than 90 percent of the upper Midwest and Great Plains is currently covered by an average of 10.7 inches of snow, and all of that snow is starting to melt.  That means that we are going to transition from one of the worst winters in modern history to a flood season that has already taken an apocalyptic turn for farmers all across America.  At this moment, millions of acres of farmland are already underwater.  Thousands of farmers are not going to be able to plant crops this year, and thousands of other farmers that have been financially ruined by the floods will never return to farming again.  This is already the worst agricultural disaster in modern American history, and it is going to get a whole lot worse.

I posted an article about this crisis yesterday, and I am troubled by the fact that most Americans don’t seem to understand the gravity of what we are facing.

Millions of bushels of wheat, corn and soybeans have been destroyed by flood waters, hundreds of millions of dollars worth of livestock have been lost, and all of us will soon be feeling a lot more pain at the grocery store.

And this would be a complete and utter national nightmare even if the flooding was all over, but the NOAA just told us that we should expect more catastrophic flooding for the next two months

Our 2019 is out today: Historic, widespread flooding to continue through May. Find map, highlights video & more at https://bit.ly/2JqDsIG  @NWS

In fact, the NOAA is using the words “unprecedented flood season” to describe what is coming, and they are warning that “more than 200 million people” are at risk…

Forecasters warned the floods would likely to continue through May, and could worsen in the coming weeks.

“This is shaping up to be a potentially unprecedented flood season, with more than 200 million people at risk,” Ed Clark, director of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Water Center in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, said on Thursday in the agency’s spring outlook.

Of all the natural disasters that we have seen in recent years, this is the biggest, and U.S. food production is going to be dramatically affected because many farmers will not be able to grow crops at all in 2019…

“The reality is this isn’t going to be over for a very long time,” Jorgenson said. “It took years after 2011 for people to come back. For me as a farmer, there are flooded acres here that to think that I’ll be able to plant a crop in 45 days is just virtually impossible.

And many farmers will never recover from this disaster at all.

According to one farmer in Iowa, somewhere around half of the farmers in his entire county will not be able to come back from this…

“I would say 50% of the farmers in our area will not recover from this,” Dustin Sheldon, a farmer in southwestern Iowa’s flood-devastated Fremont County near the swollen Missouri River, said this week.

I said it yesterday, and I will say it again.  This is the worst blow to U.S. agriculture that I have seen in my entire lifetime.

The amount of food that has just been lost is absolutely staggering.  Due to the trade war, farmers were storing more wheat, corn and soybeans than ever before, and now the floodwaters have destroyed much of what had been stored

As prices plummeted last year amid the ongoing trade fight, growers, faced with selling crops at a loss, stuffed a historic volume of grain into winding plastic tubes and steel bins. Some cash-strapped families piled crops inside their barns or outside on the ground.

Farmers say they are now finding storage bags torn and bins burst open, grain washed away or contaminated. Jeff Jorgenson, a farmer and regional director for the Iowa Soybean Association, said he has seen at least a dozen bins that burst after grains swelled when they became wet.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, any wheat, corn or soybeans that are contaminated by flood waters must be destroyed.

I know that I shared the following quote yesterday, but in order to give you an idea of the scope of the losses we are looking at, I want to share it again

As of Dec. 1, producers in states with flooding – including South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Wisconsin and Illinois – had 6.75 billion bushels of corn, soybeans and wheat stored on their farms – 38 percent of the total U.S. supplies available at that time, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture data.

And remember, the flooding is just getting started.

In just one county in Iowa, 1.8 million bushels of corn and soybeans have already been destroyed.  Nationwide, the losses are off the charts.

Needless to say, prices will be going way up at the grocery store, and they will keep going up for the rest of the year.

Sadly, even after the flood waters are gone the damage that has been done to our agricultural infrastructure will take years to repair

As the waters began to recede in parts of Nebraska, the damage to the rural roads, bridges and rail lines was just beginning to emerge. This infrastructure is critical for the U.S. agricultural sector to move products from farms to processing plants and shipping hubs.

The damage to roads means it will be harder for trucks to deliver seed to farmers for the coming planting season, but in some areas, the flooding on fields will render them all-but-impossible to use.

In Nebraska alone, hundreds of miles of rural roads have been completely washed out, and farmers such as Annette Bloom are having an extremely difficult time just getting to a main road

“We are having to travel three miles through pasture and cropland just to get out because our roads are gone,” she says. “And the corn fields are going to be devastating to get in and plant and get that going, because usually we’re planting within the next two weeks and it’s not going to happen.”

Many of America’s farmers will bravely keep going after this disaster, but for many others a financial breaking point has arrived.

Farm bankruptcies had already surged to the highest level since the last recession prior to all of this flooding, and now this crisis will end up driving many of them away from the profession for good.  The following comes from NBC News

Some farmers in Fremont County will probably not return to till their soil, many farmers here said.

“Lot of folks won’t be able to continue after this,” said Julius Schaaf, 66, who said 1,500 of his 4,000 acres were currently under water.

In the end, it is going to be a while before we know the full extent of the damage to America’s farms and our food supply, but all of the experts agree that it will be unprecedented.

Food prices are already high, but the truth is that this is as low as they are going to get.  Much less food will be produced in our heartland this year, and that will mean skyrocketing prices at our grocery stores.

And this is just one element of “the perfect storm” that is emerging.  Our society is starting to be shaken in many different ways, and 2019 is certainly shaping up to be a very “interesting” year.

About the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters. His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dream and The Most Important News. From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites. If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so. The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.

Low Inflation? The Price Of Ground Beef Has Risen 17 Percent Over The Past Year

Inflation Public DomainThanks to the Federal Reserve, the middle class is slowly being suffocated by rising food prices.  Every single dollar in your wallet is constantly becoming less valuable because of the inflation the Fed systematically creates.  And if you try to build wealth by saving money and earning interest on it, you still lose because thanks to the Federal Reserve’s near zero interest rate policies banks pay next to nothing on savings accounts.  The Federal Reserve wants you to either spend your money or to put it in the giant casino that we call the stock market.  But when Americans spend their paychecks they are finding that they don’t stretch as far as they once did.  The cost of living continues to rise at a much faster pace than wages are rising, and this is especially true when it comes to the price of food.

Someone that I know wrote to me today and let me know that she had to shut down the food pantry that she had been running for the poor for so many years.  It isn’t that she didn’t want to help the poor anymore.  It was that she just couldn’t deal with the rising food prices any longer.  Now she is just doing the best that she can to survive herself.

Perhaps you have also noticed that food prices have gotten pretty crazy lately.  In particular, meat prices have become absolutely obscene.  For example, the average price of ground beef has risen to a new record high of over $4.09 a pound.  Over the past twelve months, that works out to a whopping 17 percent increase…

The average price for a pound of ground beef climbed to another record high–$4.096 per pound–in the United States in September, according to data released today by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

In August, according to BLS, the average price for a pound of all types of ground beef topped $4 for the first time–hitting $4.013. In September, the average price jumped .083 cents, an increase of 2.1 percent in one month.

A year ago, in September 2013, the average price for a pound of ground beef was $3.502 per pound. Since then, it has climbed 59.4 cents–or about 17 percent in one year.

The “intellectuals” over at the Federal Reserve insist that “a little bit of inflation” is good for an economy, but the truth is that inflation slowly robs us of our buying power.

In a previous article, I shared a chart that showed how food inflation has risen dramatically since the year 2000.  For this article, I wanted to show how food inflation has risen since the 1970s.  As you can see, the rise in food prices has been absolutely relentless for more than 40 years…

Food Inflation 2014

If our paychecks were going up at the same rate or even faster that would be okay.

But they aren’t.

In fact, CNN is reporting that our paychecks have fallen back to 1995 levels…

Americans also don’t feel any better off. While more people may have jobs, they aren’t bringing home fatter paychecks. Wages and income have remained stagnant for years, making it tough for folks even though inflation is low. Median household income, which stood at $51,939 last year, is back to 1995 levels.

Consumers expect a median income boost of 1.1% over the next year, Curtin said. But that won’t keep up with their inflation expectations of 2.8%.

“American households, on average, are still struggling with their living standards slowly eroding,” he said.

This is one of the primary reasons why the middle class is disappearing in America.

The purchasing power of our dollars is continually diminishing.

And this could be just the beginning.  Right now, severe drought is affecting some of the most important agricultural areas around the globe.  Most people are aware of the nightmarish drought in California, but did you know that things in Brazil are even worse?  Brazil is one of the most important food exporters in the world, and so they definitely need our prayers.

In addition, a “black swan event” such as a worldwide explosion of the Ebola pandemic could quickly drive food prices into the stratosphere.

Just this week, we learned that food prices in the Ebola-stricken regions of Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone have already risen by an average of 24 percent

Infection rates in the food-producing zones of Kenema and Kailahun in Sierra Leone, Lofa and Bong County in Liberia and GuDeckDedou in Guinea are among the highest in the region. Hundreds of farmers have died.

The three governments quarantined districts and restricted movements to contain the virus’ spread. But those measures also disrupted markets and led to food scarcity and panic buying, further pushing up prices, WFP and the Food and Agriculture Organization have said.

“Prices have risen by an average of 24 percent,” said WFP spokeswoman Elisabeth Byrs, adding an assessment of major markets showed the price of basic commodities was rising in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone and in neighboring Senegal.

If you have been storing up food, I think that you will be very happy with your decision in the long run.

Without a doubt, food prices are only going to be going up from here.

But the Federal Reserve continues to insist that inflation is under control.

One of the ways that they make the “official numbers” look good is by playing accounting games.  They regularly change the way that inflation is calculated in order keep everyone calm.

You don’t have to take my word for it.  Posted below is an excerpt from an article by Mike Bryan, a vice president and senior economist in the Atlanta Fed’s research department…

The Economist retells a conversation with Stephen Roach, who in the 1970s worked for the Federal Reserve under Chairman Arthur Burns. Roach remembers that when oil prices surged around 1973, Burns asked Federal Reserve Board economists to strip those prices out of the CPI “to get a less distorted measure. When food prices then rose sharply, they stripped those out too—followed by used cars, children’s toys, jewellery, housing and so on, until around half of the CPI basket was excluded because it was supposedly ‘distorted'” by forces outside the control of the central bank. The story goes on to say that, at least in part because of these actions, the Fed failed to spot the breadth of the inflationary threat of the 1970s.

I have a similar story. I remember a morning in 1991 at a meeting of the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland’s board of directors. I was welcomed to the lectern with, “Now it’s time to see what Mike is going to throw out of the CPI this month.” It was an uncomfortable moment for me that had a lasting influence. It was my motivation for constructing the Cleveland Fed’s median CPI.

I am a reasonably skilled reader of a monthly CPI release. And since I approached each monthly report with a pretty clear idea of what the actual rate of inflation was, it was always pretty easy for me to look across the items in the CPI market basket and identify any offending—or “distorted”—price change. Stripping these items from the price statistic revealed the truth—and confirmed that I was right all along about the actual rate of inflation.

It is all a game to them.

It is all about getting to the “right number” to release to the public.

But anyone that goes to the grocery store knows what has been happening to food prices.

The next time you get to the checkout register and you feel tempted to ask the cashier what organ you should donate to pay for your groceries, please keep in mind that it is not the fault of the cashier.

Instead, there is one entity that you should blame.

Blame the Federal Reserve – their policies are slowly pushing the middle class into oblivion.

20 Signs The Epic Drought In The Western United States Is Starting To Become Apocalyptic

Drought Monitor July 8 2014When scientists start using phrases such as “the worst drought” and “as bad as you can imagine” to describe what is going on in the western half of the country, you know that things are bad.  Thanks to an epic drought that never seems to end, we are witnessing the beginning of a water crisis that most people never even dreamed was possible in this day and age.  The state of California is getting ready to ban people from watering their lawns and washing their cars, but if this drought persists we will eventually see far more extreme water conservation measures than that.  And the fact that nearly half of all of the produce in America comes out of the state of California means that ultimately this drought is going to deeply affect all of us.  Food prices have already been rising at an alarming rate, and the longer this drought goes on the higher they will go.   Let us hope and pray that this drought is permanently broken at some point, because otherwise we could very well be entering an era of extreme water rationing, gigantic dust storms and crippling food prices.  The following are 20 signs that the epic drought in the western half of the United States is starting to become apocalyptic…

#1 According to the Los Angeles Times, downtown Los Angeles is now the driest that it has been since records began being kept all the way back in 1877.

#2 The California State Water Resources Control Board says that nearly 50 communities are already on the verge of running out of water.

#3 In a desperate attempt to conserve water, the state of California is considering banning watering lawns and washing cars.  Once implemented, violators will be slapped with a $500 fine for each offense.

#4 It has been reported that a new social media phenomenon known as “drought shaming” has begun in California.  People are taking videos and photos of their neighbors wasting water and posting them to Facebook and Twitter.

#5 Climate scientist Tim Barnett says that the water situation in Las Vegas “is as bad as you can imagine“, and he believes that unless the city “can find a way to get more water from somewhere” it will soon be “out of business”.

#6 The water level in Lake Mead has now fallen to the lowest level since 1937, and it continues to drop at a frightening pace.  You can see some incredible photos of what has happened to Lake Mead right here.

#7 Rob Mrowka of the Center for Biological Diversity believes that the city of Las Vegas is going to be forced to downsize because of the lack of water…

The drought is like a slow spreading cancer across the desert. It’s not like a tornado or a tsunami, bang. The effects are playing out over decades. And as the water situation becomes more dire we are going to start having to talk about the removal of people (from Las Vegas).

#8 In some areas of southern Nevada, officials are actually paying people to remove their lawns in a desperate attempt to conserve water.

#9 According to Accuweather, “more than a decade of drought” along the Colorado River has set up an “impending Southwest water shortage” which could ultimately affect tens of millions of people.

#10 Most people don’t realize this, but the once mighty Colorado River has become so depleted that it no longer runs all the way to the ocean.

#11 Lake Powell is less than half full at this point.

#12 It is being projected that the current drought in California will end up costing the state more than 2 billion dollars this year alone.

#13 Farmers in California are allowing nearly half a million acres to lie fallow this year due to the extreme lack of water.

#14 The lack of produce coming from the state of California will ultimately affect food prices in the entire nation.  Just consider the following statistics from a recent Business Insider article

California is one of the U.S.’s biggest food producers — responsible for almost half the country’s produce and nuts and 25% of our milk and cream. Eighty percent of the world’s almonds come from the state, and they take an extraordinary amount of water to produce — 1.1 gallons per almond.

#15 As underground aquifers are being relentlessly drained in California, some areas of the San Joaquin Valley are sinking by 11 inches a year.

#16 It is being projected that the Kansas wheat harvest will be the worst that we have seen since 1989.

#17 The extended drought has created ideal conditions for massive dust storms to form.  You can see video of one female reporter bravely reporting from the middle of a massive dust storm in Phoenix right here.

#18 Things are so dry in California right now that people are actually starting to steal water.  For example, one Mendocino County couple recently had 3,000 gallons of water stolen from them.  It was the second time this year that they had been hit.

#19 At the moment, close to 80 percent of the state of California is experiencing either “extreme” or “exceptional” drought.

#20 National Weather Service meteorologist Eric Boldt says that this is “the worst drought we probably have seen in our lifetime“.

Most people just assume that this drought will be temporary, but experts tell us that there have been “megadroughts” throughout history in the western half of the United States that have lasted for more than 100 years.

If we have entered one of those eras, it is going to fundamentally change life in America.

And the frightening thing is that much of the rest of the world is dealing with water scarcity issues right now as well.  In fact, North America is actually in better shape than much of Africa and Asia.  For much more on this, please see my previous article entitled “25 Shocking Facts About The Earth’s Dwindling Water Resources“.

Without plenty of fresh water, modern civilization is not possible.

And right now, the western United States and much of the rest of the world is starting to come to grips with the fact that we could be facing some very serious water shortages in the years ahead.

So what is the solution?

Please feel free to share your thoughts by posting a comment below…

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