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Ukraine war

Ukraine crisis sends grain prices soaring, threatens food security

Wheat and corn costs approach levels seen during Arab Spring unrest

A wheat field in the Stavropol region of Russia, the world's top exporter of the grain.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- Food prices could soar even higher if conflict were to break out between Russia and Ukraine, top producers of corn and wheat that are a staple to billions around the world, and raise the specter of runaway inflation and political instability in the Middle East.

Corn futures on the Chicago Board of Trade, an international benchmark, now hover around $6.20 per bushel for near-term contracts, marking a gain of more than 10% from a year earlier. Wheat futures on the same exchange are trading 20% higher at approximately $7.60 a bushel.

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