Grain production could decrease by 37% in China
Dec 04, 2009
Climate change could decrease China's grain production by 37% according to a recent study done by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI). For every degree Celsius that the temperature increases, grain production will decrease by 10%. If no changes are made, and climate change continues, by 2050 in South Asia, wheat yields will decrease by 50%, rice will decrease by 17%, and corn will decrease by 6%.
China's 2009 corn crop decreased by 13% because of a severe drought, according SGS SA. China is the second leading corn producer behind the United States.
The IFPRI study noted that major weather disasters have become more common. During the 1990's, five times more major meteorological disasters occurred in the world. If current methods are not changed, and climate continues its warming trend, weather will become even more extreme and agriculture will become unstable. China's 30 year drought will not lessen in the next 10 years the study noted as well.
Back in September, Farmland Forecast featured an article about China's grain production (http://farmlandforecast.colvin-co.com/2009/09/30/chinese-corn-crop-down-10.aspx
). The US Grains Council stated that it is cheaper for China to import corn into Southern ports, rather than transport it from Northern parts of China because of price differentials.
"Trying to make up the difference of lower output by relying on imports doesn't look very optimistic," noted Zheng Guoguang, Administrator of the China Meteorological Administration (CMA).
If China's grain production continues to decrease because of climate change, they will be forced to import grain to cover for their lower output; increasing the overall demand for grain. In addition, China's population is changing from a grain based diet to a protein base. Since it takes roughly seven pounds of grain to produce one pound of meat, the demand for grain in China will greatly increase.
Research and development has helped in fighting climate change. China has used weather modification technology to promote rain in drought stricken areas, but the long term solution lies in changes on a much larger scale.
Read more about agriculture and farmland at farmlandforecast.colvin-co.com