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Ag Chief Wants Fuel Cost Probe

May 23rd, 2008 by Mike Vasilinda

Deluged by complaints over rising food prices, the states Agriculture Commissioner is calling for a Federal investigation into why Diesel prices are outstripping gas prices. As Mike Vasilinda tells us, consumers have probably not seen the worst when it comes to food costs.

Hear it Here: Ag Chief Calls for Fuel Cost Probe
Hundreds of complaints are coming to state regulators over the rising prices for food. Florida Agriculture Commissioner Charles Bronson says corn being used to produce fuel is not the problem.

“Your food prices are not going up because a 15 to 20% of corn in this country are being used for ethanol. Bronson told reporters.

Driven by what he believes are oil speculators, Charles Bronson is calling for a federal investigation. For those that are buying and selling and trading oil futures four to eleven times before that tanker ever lands at a port to process that oil you can bet none of them are losing money.

At his vegetable market, owner Butch Reagan says prices are up slightly.
Everybody had got to factor in that fuel for good margin I mean, like a percentage of like five to ten percent.

For consumers the highest prices are still on the way. Thats because the high cost of diesel will start showing up in the next planting season.

Communicating with growers daily, Reagan says some farmers may not plant another crop. A lot of them are thinking about quitting, thats a fact. he says.

The reality is, state officials like Bronson can do little but raise their voices. But he joins growing number of people that are demanding answers.

Bronson worries that the increasing costs for fuel and food will eventually drive a 1929 style recession because the increases are based solely on speculators with a profit motive.

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