China’s long-term food security situation alarming – official

China’s long-term food security situation is alarming and despite bumper harvests the world’s second-biggest economy faces a 9.9 million ton shortfall in the amount of grain it produces and consumes annually, a senior official said.

China’s food security is now more urgent with a rising population and industrialization encroaching on farmland. The situation is also aggravated by water and soil pollution, the official Xinhua news agency quoted Ren Zhengxiao, head of the State Administration of Grain, as telling a press conference in Beiing.

China’s total grain output increased 2.4 percent year on year to 621 million tons in 2015, the 12th straight year of growth.

Policymakers renewed their commitment to food security during a conference at the end of 2015. The government will secure the supply of staples, protect farmland and maintain production capacity, they said, according to Xinhua.

China will ensure grain output in major producing regions, trying to keep cereal largely self-sufficient and staples absolutely safe, Xinhua said, adding that the government will offer preferential policies to large-scale grain farms while ensuring that farmers benefit from agricultural development.

China will also improve price formation mechanisms and government purchase measures for important farm products.

 

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