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Investors need to prepare for a severe food crisis that threatens "global stability" and is likely to last for many decades.
That's according to Jeremy Grantham, the founder of Boston-based institutional money manager GMO and one of the world's most famous investors, who in his latest "investment outlook" paints a frightening picture of what lies ahead.
According to Grantham, lack of food will be the world's foremost economic priority for decades. Even if we could produce enough food to feed everyone on the planet, he says, skyrocketing costs will mean millions won't be able to afford it.
If soaring food prices are coupled with sky-high gas prices, he said, "the risks of social collapse and global instability increase to a point where they probably become the major source of international confrontations."
Grantham says the potential devastation is badly underestimated by "almost everybody" including the pundits and the mainstream media.
One group of scientists, economists and geopolitical analysts, however, agree with Grantham's outlook. They believe, in fact, it's a much bigger problem which is why they've released their findings to the United Nations, UK Parliament, and 16 Fortune 500 companies.
"We've uncovered a catastrophic pattern in our nation's food system," said Chris Martenson an economic expert and one of the team's members. "One we believe could soon hasten a world food crisis -a chain of events that could lead to massive food inflation, even riots."
Martenson's research is garnering widespread attention this month, after appearing in a newly released documentary. [WATCH IT HERE]
His findings show that this catastrophic pattern isn't limited to food.
The work of this team of scientists, economists, and geopolitical analysts has garnered such attention, they were brought in front of the United Nations, UK Parliament, and numerous Fortune 500 companies to share much of their findings. Click on the short video above to see the eerie pattern.
YOUR MONEY - AND WAY OF LIFE - IS AT RISK
"We found the same catastrophic pattern in our energy, water and economic systems as well," Martenson said. "And these systems could all implode at the same time. Food, water, energy, money. Everything."
The pattern Martenson identified affects the entire global economic system. It's eerily similar, he explains, to the kind of pattern you see in a pyramid scheme, one that escalates exponentially before it collapses - with little notice.
"What this pattern represents is a dangerous countdown clock that's quickly approaching zero," said Keith Fitz-Gerald, another member of the documentary's investigative team, and the president of The Fitz-Gerald Group. "And when it does, the resulting chaos is going to crush Americans. Our way of life is in jeopardy."
Dr. Kent Moors, an adviser to 16 world governments on energy issues as well as a member of two U.S. State Department task forces on energy, agrees.
"At first, it's almost impossible to perceive. Everything looks fine, just like in every pyramid scheme. Yet the insidious growth of the virus keeps doubling in size, over and over again - in shorter and shorter periods of time - until it hits unsustainable levels. And it collapses the system."
The impact on energy could be severe, Dr. Moors says.
It could get so bad that the lowest price you'll ever see for a barrel of oil is $150, says Moors. "That will be the new norm very soon."
Fitz-Gerald also warns of a period of devastating inflation where the dollar becomes nearly worthless.
A recent survey, reports USA Today, notes that in the coming years it could take $150,000 a year in household income for a family to afford basic living expenses - and maybe go out to a movie.
Already, in fact, "52% of Americans feel they barely have enough to afford the basics."
"You've got higher food prices, higher fuel costs, more people, and less land to use for growing food," Fitz-Gerald said. "If our research is right Americans will have to make some tough choices on how they'll go about surviving when basic necessities become nearly unaffordable and the economy becomes dangerously unstable."