Next Up For China: Food Shortages

The brutal winter continues to tie China in knots today, with tempers of stranded travelers beginning to flare. No relief is in sight, with still more snow being forecast. But it actually gets worse. Officials are now warning that many winter crops have been damaged or destroyed outright and that food shortages will result in the near future.

China is struggling to cope with its worst snowfall in decades, with officials warning of future food shortages as winter crops are wrecked.
The government is trying to convince people the situation is under control – praising officials and naming three men who died as "revolutionary martyrs".

But forecasters are warning of more snow and urging people not to travel.

The bad weather has affected millions of Chinese keen to return to their home villages over the New Year holiday.

Dozens are thought to have died as much of the country endures one of its harshest winters for half a century.

Scuffles and frustration

Communist Party official Chen Xiwen warned of a serious impact on crop production in the south of the country.

"The impact on fresh vegetables and on fruit in some places has been catastrophic," he said.

"If it heads northward, then the impact on the whole year's grain production will be noticeable."

Analysts say the destruction of crops will drive up food prices and fuel inflation, which has already risen rapidly over the past year.

China has called out the army to try to help clear snow and provide much-needed relief supplies, but the situation is grim at the moment. Meanwhile, in Britain, the British Press is developing a bizarre narrative, claiming that it has been a "mild" winter there, despite widespread flooding and a new wave of arctic cold that is battering the country at the moment.

Winter arrived with a vengeance today as blizzards and Arctic winds swept across parts of the country, with heavy snow to come.

Bitter gales and rain are bringing more misery to areas already hit by flooding earlier in the month.

MeteoGroup UK said Scotland and parts of southern England were being hit by gusty winds today, while freezing weather conditions have caused chaos on the roads.

Snow and hail even hit central London today, but the brief flurries of snow and hail are set to be followed by snowstorms tomorrow evening which could hit commuters travelling home, Met Office experts warned.

The snow was caused by a cold front moving across central London.

A 20-year-old man was seriously injured when a tree crashed onto his car at Guildford, Surrey. The high winds and cold temperatures are expected to last until Sunday.

"We expect to see a covering of snow for central London and outlying areas at rush hour tomorrow, and a lot of sleety showers as well," said a Met Office spokeswoman.

This is mild? I guess my dictionary is out of date.

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