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The Los Angeles Times this morning reports that the US Department of Agriculture estimates that food prices will rise five percent during 2008, the largest single-year increase in the US since 1990.

In addition, the five percent increase is significantly higher than the 3.5 percent increase that was projected back in January.

The root cause – the cost of wheat, according to USDA, which is expected to push cereal and bakery products prices up as much as eight percent.

And, USDA projects, the bad news will continue into next year, when the cost of meat and poultry is expected to go up even more than this year because of the high cost of feed.

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