It's a huge strain on the budgets of the global poor. Yglesias asks whether the US is in any way culpable:

A good rundown from Lester Brown suggests a few ways in which American policy is making things worse. Most notably, ethanol subsidies aren’t a good way to clean the environment, but they’re a great way of raising the price of agricultural commodities. Farmers like it, but people who need to eat suffer. Similarly, pro-sprawl and anti-density policies incentivize the redevelopment of farmland as exurbs. Nice if you’re an oil-exporter, not so nice if you eat food.

In the long run, higher prices will probably lead to higher crop yields and it’ll all even out. But in the interim expect hungry people and food riots.

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