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Amid Olympics chatter, concern continues to grow over extreme weather and rising food prices, with many tweeting this week about IRIN’s “Food: Price Shock Hotspots .” BBC News Magazine looks at possible future climate-friendly food stuffs —including insects, lab-grown meat, and algae—in “Future Foods: What Will We Be Eating in 20 Year’s Time?” Demand for protein is expected to expand along with the global middle class—which may be as large as 600 million people in G20 developing countries, according to a Carnegie Endowment paper, "In Search of the Global Middle Class." Authors Uri Dadush and Shimelse Ali argue their "Car Index" of the number of cars in circulation provides "a relatively good measure of the number of middle-class households." A BRIC economy is the subject of the Washington Post’s "Returning Migrants Boost Mexico’s Middle Class" -- a look at how immigrants’ savings are being used back home. In Africa, progress could be hampered by jobless growth and growing numbers of jobless young people, according to "Generation U – Africa’s Era of Unemployment."
“Volatile food prices and a growing population mean we have to rethink what we eat, say food futurologists.”
“Whereas in advanced countries, even households classified as poor own cars, in developing countries car ownership is almost synonymous with at least middle-class status.”
Graphic From Carnegie Foundation
“Where remittances once mostly helped hungry families back home simply survive, surveys now reveal that the longer a migrant stays up north, the more likely the cash transfers will be used to start new businesses or to pay for homes, farm equipment and school tuitions.”
“The latest African Economic Outlook paints a promising picture for the continent, but crucially, it also warns that the scourge of youth unemployment will impact severely on the capacity of African states.”
Longreads is a regular feature on the Voices blog highlighting development research and in-depth reporting.