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  • Ryan Wittler

How the Russian Invasion of Ukraine Will Affect Global Food Security


A new analysis from researchers at the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) has found that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine will disrupt global markets for several important food crops.

Some highlights:

The analysis emphasized the growing importance of the Black Sea region in the world’s supply of grains and oil seeds, evolving from a net importer of grain in the early 1990s to a vital global supplier today.

  • According to the IFPRI, exports from Ukraine and Russia account for 12% of the total calories traded around the world.

  • The two countries also account for nearly three-quarters of the world’s supply of sunflower seed oil, one of the main vegetable oils used for cooking.

The analysis also found the invasion could impact the importing countries that rely on products from Ukraine and Russia.

  • North African and Middle East countries could be particularly hard hit, as the region imports over 50% of their cereals from the two countries, including large shares of wheat and barley.

  • Ukraine is also a major supplier of maize for the E.U., China, Egypt, and Libya.

Long vs. short term:

According to the analysis, the long-term impacts of the invasion could also hit fertilizers, as natural gas exports from Russia are likely to continue to rise.

  • In the near future, the analysis predicts Ukrainian exports of maize will be hit the hardest due to the crop’s springtime export period.

  • Wheat and barley crops may skirt some damage as they are harvested in the summer with exports likely already completed by February.

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