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VERIFY: Is the Russia-Ukraine conflict causing a food shortage in the U.S.?

President Biden said "it's going to be real."

ATLANTA — Concerns that the Russia-Ukraine conflict will lead to food shortages here in the U.S. are real according to experts.

In March, President Joe Biden issued a warning aimed at American consumers, insisting food shortages are coming.

”It’s going to be real,” said the President.

An 11Alive viewer asked us to verify.

THE QUESTION

Is the Russia-Ukraine conflict causing a food shortage in the U.S.?

OUR SOURCES

THE ANSWER

No, the conflict between Russian and Ukraine isn't causing a food shortage in the U.S. right now. However, experts predict we could see one, particularly on wheat related products, in the coming months. 

WHAT WE FOUND

The National Grocers Association tells us there are many reasons for the occasional shortage of some items, an issue that began during the pandemic. Some of those reasons include labor shortages and a lack of truck drivers.

“As we’ve seen across the economy, product availability and price inflation are being driven by a perfect storm of factors,” a spokesperson for the association told 11Alive. “While there is plenty of food in the supply chain, we anticipate consumers will continue to experience sporadic disruptions in certain product categories as we have seen over the past two years due to the ongoing supply and labor challenges as well as input costs.”

Right now, the products most threatened by the Russia-Ukraine conflict are wheat and fertilizer.

However, the FDA said they don’t expect a food shortage here because the U.S. is a major producer of key items like wheat.

Yet, supply chain expert Marty Parker believes while there’s not a shortage now; one could be on the horizon.

“Ukraine and Russia are called the bread basket of Europe,” Parker explained. “They make 30-40% of the world’s wheat. A lot of different experts say it’s coming, that we will have a food shortage especially wheat and wheat related products. My guess is probably two to three months out.”

    

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