Group co-secretary Clare Baker on 6 July delivered a petition with 2143 signatories to Vicky Ford, Euro MP for the East of England, calling on her to vote for strong new rules to tackle financial speculation on food.Vicky Ford MEP is an alternate member of a key committee in the European parliament that will vote on financial reforms which could prevent financial speculation by banks and hedge funds driving up food prices.
The average UK household’s annual grocery bill has risen by £132 in the past year. In developing countries, where people typically spend 50 to 90 per cent of their incomes on food, steep price hikes in recent years have driven millions of people into hunger and poverty.
Campaigners from the Cambridge World Development Movement group are calling on Vicky Ford MEP to support the European plans to tackle food speculation, as intense lobbying by the financial sector is threatening to derail the new regulations.
Vicky Ford MEP is in a key position to tackle the problem by using her vote next week to back strong new rules which will benefit food consumers everywhere. Financial speculation benefits nobody except a few wealthy bankers. But it is fuelling high food prices, putting pressure on squeezed family budgets, and forcing millions of people into hunger worldwide. We are delivering a message from thousands of people to say that we need tough new rules to curb food speculation. Food is essential for human survival, and should not be subject to financial gambling.
We’ve since heard that the vote, which was to have taken place on 9-10 July, has been postponed to September. But there was no harm in getting WDM’s point across now!