COLDWATER (WTVB) - The price of everything made from or connected to grain grown in the U.S.is about to rise. Grain prices set new records again Friday as a continuing drought and extreme heat wipes out crops. Forecasters say there's no relief in sight for the worst drought in over a half century. On Thursday, most of Branch County was placed in the extreme drought category by the U.S. Drought Monitor. Wheat prices on the Chicago Board of Trade found a new four-year-high on Friday while corn jumped to an all time record. Experts say the first sign of rising prices will probably been seen in milk, followed by beef and poultry and then grain products. Sixty-percent of the nation's corn crop is now used to produce ethanol which will probably drive gasoline prices higher in the next few months. The United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization is worried about grain price hikes. High prices in 2007 and 2008 caused a food crisis that sparked riots in many poor nations. Fortunately wheat stockpiles are better worldwide than they were in 2008 and there is plenty of rice.
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