Knowledge for better food systems

How China plans to feed 1.4 billion growing appetites

Image: Güldem Üstün, China (Beijing) Tasteful sea animals, Flickr, Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic

A National Geographic feature covers the ways in which China’s diet is changing and its food system is becoming more industrialised.

Meat consumption in China has tripled since 1990, and demand for processed foods has increased. Buying land in other countries is one strategy, but the government is also eager to see China produce most of its own food.

Family farms in China tend to be small and fragmented, making it difficult to use the industrialised farming methods common in the West. Clustering farms together may be one way to solve this. However, China also has sophisticated meat and dairy farms with high levels of automation.

See the feature here. See also the FCRN’s report on China’s food system, Appetite for Change, and nine related briefing papers.

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Asia is Earth's largest and most populous continent. It hosts many densely populated and large cities as well as enormous barely populated regions, which all together host over half of the human population. Agriculture as a source of income is of major importance in the region. In most Asian countries, agriculture is the biggest user of water and in some regions can be responsible for to 90% of total water consumption through irrigation.

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