How a railroad strike could send food prices soaring

The nation’s supply of food could take a hit if railroad workers go on strike, driving up prices at the grocery store and limiting U.S. grain exports to countries facing famine.  

As soon as next week, 115,000 freight rail workers could walk out if they cannot reach a new contract with railroads, potentially shutting down the national rail network that transports 20 percent of all grain shipments. 

While unions say they want to avert a strike, and Congress has the power to block it, the U.S. food sector is rattled by the prospect of a national railroad shutdown in the middle of peak harvest season.    

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