“To say that biofuels are the culprit [for food-price hikes] clearly underestimates the demand [for food] and really shows a gross misunderstanding of the world food situation.”

— Bill Doyle, CEO Potash Corp, the world’s largest fertilizer company, which has seen its share price rise 600 percent in the past two years, quoted April 24

“While global [grain] output in 2007/08 would be the highest ever, mainly because of a record U.S. maize (corn) crop, this would not match consumption, resulting in a further downturn in global ending stocks in 2007/08. By far the biggest increase in consumption would be in the biofuels sector, with the amount of grain (mainly maize) used to produce ethanol set to reach 100m. tons, an increase of 44 percent from the previous year.”

— International Grains Council, Dec. 2007 press release

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Note: Doyle may be in denial about biofuels — which have been very, very good to his company’s bottom line — but at least he understands the depth of the crisis. Back in February, he said this:

If you had any major upset where you didn’t have a crop in a major growing agricultural region this year, I believe you’d see famine … We keep going to the cupboard without replacing and so there is enormous pressure on agriculture to have a record crop every year. We need to have a record crop in 2008 just to stay even with this very low inventory situation.”

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