As reason contributor Peter Suderman pointed out yesterday, the biofuels craze is already boosting the price of beer because farmers are shifting away from barley to biofuel crops made more lucrative by mandates and subsidies.
As if that weren't bad enough, a New Zealand climatologist now warns:
The price of beer is likely to rise in coming decades because climate change will hamper the production of a key grain needed for the brew -- especially in Australia, a scientist warned Tuesday.
Jim Salinger, a climate scientist at New Zealand's National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research, said climate change likely will cause a decline in the production of malting barley in parts of New Zealand and Australia. Malting barley is a key ingredient of beer.
"It will mean either there will be pubs without beer or the cost of beer will go up," Salinger told the Institute of Brewing and Distilling convention.
Whole depressing AP article here.
Disclosure: I drink scotch--preferably single malt Caol Ila, Lagavulin, or Laphroaig--which is also made using barley.