China is a giant in the global economy. In the recent past, it was a major international importer. The question is: what has happened to make China consume more than it produces in the food sector today? Here are three fundamental reasons for China's economic counterbalance in this sector.
Agricultural self-sufficiency in crisis
Agricultural self-sufficiency is probably one of the most compelling reasons, continue this article for more details. Indeed, the Chinese agricultural sector is no longer able to satisfy the Chinese population. According to the World Bank, China's population was estimated to be 1.412 billion in 2021. This state of affairs makes demand very concentrated. However, since 2009, the country has been importing almost 50% of its food products. According to China's National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), a tangible proof of this agricultural crisis is that today, the soybean exporting giant imports more than 100 tons of these grains per year. However, if Chinese agriculture is no longer able to ensure the survival of the population, it is far from being the cause of the country's food counterbalance.
Food security: Are the Chinese wary of their production?
In recent years, China has experienced a wealth of scandals related to the food crisis. These scandals have led to food insecurity, which the population is reluctant to accept. From that moment on, food safety became a major concern for consumers and preceded water and air quality. This concern in China has been reinforced by the numerous laws passed by the government that have radically changed eating habits. The Chinese, even the middle class, no longer want to take the risk of consuming food produced in dubious conditions. He prefers by ricochet what comes from elsewhere, imported products. The objective is to consume healthy and organic products.
China and imports: A simple consequence of globalisation?
If agriculture and food security are undeniable reasons, it must be acknowledged that globalisation has its share of responsibility. Indeed, the Chinese have now visited several countries and have tasted and appreciated several dishes that are not found at home. This has somehow had an impact on their perception of local products.