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April 17th, 2017

Understanding recent challenges and new food policy in China

Published by Global Food Security Journal,

This article in the Global Food Security Journal reviews China’s agricultural and food policy with specific focus on recent challenges, initial policy responses and their consequences, and re-adjusting policies. Despite remarkable achievements in the past, China is facing several major challenges, in particular on ensuring sustainable agricultural growth, improving food security, and increasing farmers’ income. The results show that the policy responses to the challenges of sustainable agriculture are strong and encouraging. Adjusting the national food security target in response to sustainable agriculture and major efforts to improve food security are significant. To increase farmer’s income, China shifted its policy regime from taxing to subsidizing and protecting agriculture. Even though these price interventions increased farmers’ income, they also resulted in several serious problems. One negative effect of the interventions together with the falling international prices was the increased price gaps of major agricultural commodities between China and international markets. This increased imports of agricultural products, resulting in massive rise of government grain stock. Good news is that some new efforts to solve these problems, like efforts to separate income support from maize pricing policy and the target price policy, may bring China’s market reform back to the right track though they still need to be evaluated. The paper concludes that China’s experiences are useful lessons not only for China’s way forward to its agricultural and food policy, but also to many developing countries.

Curated from sciencedirect.com