July 16, 2007 (LPAC)--Large increases in the prices of certain key food commodities, caused by diversion of food supplies and land to the "bio-fuels bubble," are now hitting food aid to the world's neediest nations, says the UN World Food Program (WFP). The July 16 Financial Times reports an interview with WFP director Josette Sheeran, who says that food cost increases "mean we are now able to reach far less people" with a total amount of food aid which, at $600 million annually, hasn't changed since 2000. WFP purchasing costs for all types of food have risen 50% in five years. Sheeran says the institution will be forced to ask donor countries to provide more food and money, an appeal which may not succeed. Citing Uganda as one nation in which food aid programs had to be cut back because of the maize and cereal price increases, she said, "We face the tightest agriculture markets in decades, and, in some cases, the tightest ever on record".