Consumers could be badly affected by a global food crisis which has sparked protests across the world, Northern Ireland cereal importers have warned.
The global rise in food costs has been blamed on surging oil prices which have pushed up fertiliser and transport costs, as well as drought, which has slashed grain harvests in Australia and Africa.
The combination of the move to grow crops for biofuels and export restrictions by producing countries has also added to the crisis.
Global food prices are at record highs, having soared by 236% over the past five years.
In response the World Bank and International Monetary Fund have launched a $$500 million fund to fight hunger and poverty.
However, Doris Leeman, from the Northern Ireland Grain Trade Association (NIGTA),said it could affect Northern Ireland.
"There could be a knock on effect here because those countries will be trying to keep more of their local produce in their own countries."
Ms Leeman said the bio-fuel issue has also sparked concern.
"It is not just a human consumption point of view, it is also an animal issue.
"Wheat is not available for food or to feed animals, instead it is used for bio-fuel.
"The other thing that is aggravating the problem is the economies like India and China are getting a better class of diet.
"They are starting to use their wheat and so on at home to produce that food.
"That makes grain very expensive for our farmers to feed their cattle to produce food.
"Farmers are paying a high price for both fertiliser and grain this year, which will make food expensive.
"The consumer has got used to cheap food, and they are beginning to pay proper prices for food, but they are not used to that."