The economic gap between China's rural poor compared to those living in urban areas is widening, as China sees its worst inflation in 11 years. While the growing middle class living in the cities continue to spend, many poor villagers and farmers are starving.

With the prices of food skyrocketing, China's rural population of 700 million is getting hit hard.

According to statistics, the cost of food rose 21 percent in the first quarter of this year compared to last year.

Concerns are high that rising food prices may fuel social unrest and even violence in the countryside. The CCP has attempted to cap prices to avoid unrest. But economists say this method doesn't address the root of the problem.

But for poor farmers like Mr. Li of Laoyemiao village, rising prices make products like meat are a luxury he can rarely afford.

[Mr. Li, Chinese Farmer]:
"Those with better circumstances can eat a bit of meat once a week. You can't afford more than that at 15 yuan (USD $2.14) per half kilo. I think this is something that's seriously lacking."

Economic analyst Gene Ma sees a dramatic contrast between the reaction of China's rich and poor to the increase in prices.

[Gene Ma, Economist with CITIC Securities]:
"Given that the poor people have to spend almost 40 percent of their income on food, so the rising food prices, especially the pork prices, really hurt the poor in China, which also makes the inflation issue such a hot subject and such a priority in China right now."

We will continue to follow this developing story as it continues to affect more and more Chinese.

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