China’s appetite for imported food grows

10/22/2013 11:27:00 AM
Tom Karst

The rising middle class will spend more on food and luxury items.

The challenges to China’s growth include water quality/quantity shortage and poor air quality. Close to 400,000 deaths per year are attributed to air pollution and China loses 8% to 12% of its gross domestic product because of its poor environment, he said. Lack of effective food safety regulations worry Chinese consumers, with continuing problems with dairy, meat and other products.

In response to China’s troubles regulating food, there is increasing interest from Chinese consumer for green and organic food, and healthy products.

Agricultural modernization will likely reduce the number of farms and increase sales. Chinese has the potential to show export growth in apples, pears, grapes, carrots, garlic and mushrooms, Trachtenberg said.

Investment in Chinese agriculture will increase from overseas and domestically with greater interest in modern seeds and genetically engineered crop.

China currently loses about 25% to 30% of its fruit and vegetable output, and Trachtenberg predicted greater investment in ag mechanization and post harvest treatment.

The country will benefit from falling internal trade barriers, improved infrastructure and improved food safety, he said.

Patrick Vizzone, analyst with the National Australia Bank, Hong Kong branch, said in his presentation that China’s economic growth will fuel food demand in Asia. China’s economy is expected to grow at a rate of close to 7.5% in 2013 and 7.2% in 2014, he said. That compares with 3.5% growth for the global economy.

The expansion of agriculture productivity will slow due to resource constraints, he said.


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Jim Provost    
I Love Produce, West Grove, PA  |  October, 23, 2013 at 12:31 PM

I thought the presenters at this Global Conference were right on the money with their trends and analysis. I Love Produce exports and imports from China, and the growth on the export side to China is surpassing the imports. This trend bears out with official USDA statistics. The United States is now China’s largest agriculture trading partner. The total China-United States trade in agriculture reached $40.4 billion in 2012, up more than 17 percent from the previous year. When is comes to agriculture, China is running a significant trade deficit with us! Here is a link to that study: http://gain.fas.usda.gov/Recent%20GAIN%20Publications/China%20Agricultural%20Tr ade%20Report%20in%202012_Beijing_China%20-%20Peoples%20Republic%20of_2-25- 2013.pdf Jim Provost, I Love Produce

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