Food price spikes are correlated with increases in food riots. Red dashed vertical lines correspond to beginning dates of “food riots” and protests associated with the major recent unrest in North Africa and the Middle East. The overall death toll is reported in parentheses. The blue vertical line indicates the date on which the authors of the cited report  submitted a report to the U.S. government warning of the link between food prices, social unrest, and political instability. The inset shows the FAO Food Price Index from 1990 to 2011. (The figure is reproduced with permission from ).