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Janine Wong: Pears from the McMaster Farmstand which runs biweekly to provide local produce to students on campus.

Janine Wong/Janine Wong

Families are facing sticker shock as they watch their grocery bill climb due to the rising cost of food. What are the reasons behind the jump in prices, and is there anything a family can do to cope?

David Sparling was online to take readers' questions about rising food prices and the reasons behind the increases.

Mr. Sparling is a professor and the chair of Agri-Food Innovation and Regulation at the Richard Ivey School of Business at the University of Western Ontario in London, Ont. Previously, he was a professor at the University of Guelph where he served as an associate dean and executive director of the Institute of Agri-Food Policy Innovation. He also taught at the University of Melbourne and the Australian Graduate School of Management.

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