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China Agricultural Newsletter - March 2013

The China Agricultural Update is provided by the Iowa Economic Development Authority's (IEDA) office in China, which is operated by Phoenix Consulting LLC. Ms. Wendy Zhang, IEDA's trade specialist in the China office, can provide customized market research information for your company. For more information on how to utilize the services offered by IEDA's Beijing Office, please contact Mr. Joseph Rude at

Laws,Regulations and Policies

China stresses farmers' property rights in land transfers

 BEIJING, March 5 (Xinhua) - China included farmers' property rights into its government report for the first time Tuesday, suggesting enhanced protection of their rights amid the country's frequent land transfers.

China announces additional testing for all US pork March 1

 China has announced that beginning on March 1, 2013 all U.S. pork products will be tested for ractopamine, a feed additive used to promote lean muscle growth by a third-party testing firm, according to the U.S. Meat Export Federation. The feed additive has been found to be safe and certain levels are deemed acceptable by the United Nations. 

China officials calls for measures to improve agricultural output

 Chinese officials are calling for additional measures to boost agricultural output and ensuring China’s grain security, despite annual increases in agricultural production over the past nine years. 

China to release state wheat, rapeseed stocks

 In a move aimed at cooling domestic wheat prices that are near record highs, China will release wheat and rapeseed oil from state reserves in early March. 

China to elevate food, drug agency

 BEIJING - China plans to elevate the status of the existing State Food and Drug Administration to a general administration in order to strengthen regulation and boost people's confidence in the country's food and drug products, a top official said Sunday.

Rural reform ensures grain security

 Despite annual increases in agricultural output over the past nine years, national lawmakers and political advisors still call for more measures to boost agricultural production and ensuring the country's grain security.

China extends more loans to support agriculture

 China's central bank said Monday that it granted more loans in 2012 to financial institutions in rural areas in order to support agriculture. The People's Bank of China (PBOC) said in a statement on its website that the total amount of loans extended to those institutions reached 209 billion yuan (33.27 billion U.S. dollars) last year, up 22.37 percent from the previous year.

MOA stresses clean delivery of farm machinery subsidies

 MOA pledges to implement the policy of subsidies for agricultural machinery purchase in an effective, clean and honest manner, stated by Vice Minister Zhang Taolin at a national conference on subsidies for purchasing agricultural machinery in Hangzhou on Feb.27th, 2013.

Industry and Business Watch

China's farm produce prices drop consecutively

 Prices of edible farm produce in 36 major Chinese cities have declined for five consecutive weeks, new official data has showed. The Ministry of Commerce said Tuesday in an online statement that the wholesale price of pork, the country's staple meat, fell 1 percent week on week, while the price of beef saw a 0.1-percent rebound since the previous week.

Grain production climbing toward record

 China's grain output is likely to hit a record high this year and bring a 10th consecutive year of growth, as the nation steps up efforts to boost agricultural technology and infrastructure, a senior official said.

Vice Minister Zhang prioritizes three major projects in agricultural sci-tech

 MOA identified three major projects in agricultural sci-tech this year at the National Agricultural Science, Technology and Education Video Conference held in Beijing on March 1st, 2013.

China leads in biotech crops

 China, the world's largest food consumer, led developing countries in growing biotech crops last year, according to a report by an industry organization. The country was the world's sixth-largest grower of biotech crops in 2012, the same as a year ago, the report by the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-Biotech Applications, or ISAA A, said.

China kicks off research for new type of rice

 China launched a research and development plan for a new type of super rice, which is expected to yield at least 15 tons of rice per hectare, the People's Daily reported on Thursday.

Farming pioneer: China bettering rice yield target

 Yuan Longping, "father of hybrid rice," said on Sunday that China could reach its target unit yield of 1,000 kg per mu (0.0667 hectares) of paddy rice in 2015, five years ahead of schedule. "I'm confident of reaching the target," said Yuan, a member of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, China's top political advisory body.

China to see record imports for soy in 2013/14

 Despite falling short of forecast in long-term projections, China’s soy imports will reach a record in 2013-14, due to declining local productions at a 21-year low. 

China feed mills double corn purchases in March

 Chinese feed mills bought 600,000 metric tons of U.S. corn in March, in nine cargoes for delivery starting in October, twice as much corn as they purchased in February. The purchase brings total imports to roughly 900,000 metric tons of corn so far for 2013, according to industry experts.

India sells over 13,700 tonnes in first corn deal to China

 India’s first corn cargo of over 13,700 tonnes was sold to China, a breakthrough between the two countries. Delivery of the corn supplies from Indian states of Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka are scheduled next month at an approx. US$320 (cost and freight), or US$275 tonne (free on board), a trader said at the Global Grain Asia Conference. 

China delays implementation of GMO corn, rice

 As it tries to head off public fears, China has delayed the introduction of genetically-modified rice and corn. The world’s largest rice producer and consumer gave safety approvals to Bt rice and phytase corn in 2009, but has not begun commercial production, even though it has already spent billions of yuan on research.

13,000 pig carcasses found in Huangpu River, China

 According to officials, the number of pig carcasses extracted from the Huangpu River, China, has reached 13,000 just days after the gruesome discovery caused concern about the local water supply.

Henan Shuanghui to boost pork production capacity by 50%

 In order to boost its production capacity by about 50%, Henan Shuanghui Investment & Development has outlined plans to invest about CNY5 billion (US$805 million) for the expansion of business. As part of the expansion plan, the company is purchasing small abattoirs and will also slaughter 52% more hogs in 2013 than the previous year, reports said. 

Zhengbang Group constructs hog farm worth US$480 million

 A one million-head hog farm in Linwu County, Chezhou, Hunan, China is being constructed by the Zhengbang Group with an estimated cost of about US$480 million.

China's PIC, Shennong collaborate on sow nucleus farm

 An agreement between PIC, a division of Genus and leading swine genetics company, and the Shennong Agricultural Group was announced to jointly invest in the operation of a 1,000 sow nucleus farm in China’s Yunnan Province.

Poultry may emerge from pork's shadow in China, Rabobank says

 In China, poultry producers have long lived in the shadow of the pork industry, which remains the meat of choice throughout the nation. While this trend is evident in the highly correlated prices between each market, a new report from Rabobank suggests that China's poultry industry is beginning to develop its own growth path.

China rapeseed imports, production to rise in 2013/14

 China’s rapeseed imports are estimated to increase slightly to three million tonnes in the 2013/14 marketing year, according to the USDA. Domestic rapeseed production is forecast to rise to 12.7 million tonnes on slightly increased planted area, up from 12.5 million tonnes in 2012/13. 

China sees 6% rise in milk production during 2012

 China’s milk output has seen a rise of 6% in 2012, along with imports of all dairy products, despite tight supplies. Growth rates are slightly below that of 2011. 

US to resume dairy exports to China market

 After nearly three years of dispute over health and sanitary certification of US dairy exports, the issue was resolved by regulators in China and the US, ensuring continued shipments to a fast-growing market.

NZ milk import quota depleted within a month

 Chinese importers have used up the import quota of New Zealand dairy products for 2013, and further imports will be levied in accordance with the Most Favored Nations (MFN) tax rate, CBN Daily reported.

Urbanization to lift machinery sector, executives predict

 China's rapid urbanization will bring more opportunities for the development of the agricultural machinery industry, according to the chairman of the nation's leading tractor maker.

New irrigation tech saves 50% of water

 WUHAN - Chinese scientists have developed a new irrigation technology that consumes 50 percent less water than drip irrigation technology. The trace quantity irrigation technology is based on the soil capillary force principle. When the technology is applied, plants take the initiative in absorbing water according to their respective demands, rather than being watered passively, said Zhu Jun, an irrigation expert at Huazhong University of Science and Technology.

Food scare bites 20% off Yum's sales

 YUM Brands Inc has said its sales in China slid 20 percent in January and February following a food scare over its chicken suppliers. But the drop wasn't as bad as feared.

China and UN to strengthen cooperation in animal disease control

 China and the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) have increased cooperation in animal disease control and detection, according to Percy Misika, a FAO representative to China. 


Average food prices in 50 cities March 11-20, 2013



Current price (RMB)

Percentage changes as compared to last period(%, March 1-10, 2013)


Japonica rice / kg




Strong flour / kg




Standard wheat / kg



Soy products

Bean curd / kg



Peanut oil

5 Lin barrel bulk / litre



Soyabean oil

5 Lin barrel bulk / litre



Rape seed oil

Grade 1 in bulk / kg




Rump / kg




Belly meat / kg




Leg / kg




Leg / kg




Frozen fresh chicken / kg




Breast / kg




Frozen fresh duck / kg




Fresh eggs in bulk / kg



Source: China National Bureau of Statistics



Major meat retail price March 2013


Pork (Lean):

                                                                      RMB1.00 yuan/kg

Average Sales Price (Street markets & Supermarkets)

Var. Percent

A.      03/11/13-03/20/13

B.      03/01/13-03/10/13

C.      02/11/13-02/20/13

D.      03/11/12-03/20/12













                                                                      RMB1.00 yuan/kg

Average Sales Price (Street markets & Supermarkets)

Var. Percent

E.       03/11/13-03/20/13

F.       03/01/13-03/10/13

G.      02/11/13-02/20/13

H.      03/11/12-03/20/12













                                                                              RMB1.00 yuan/kg

Average Sales Price (Street markets & Supermarkets)

Var. Percent

I.        03/11/13-03/20/13

J.        03/01/13-03/10/13

K.      02/11/13-02/20/13

L.       03/11/12-03/20/12












Source: China Animal Agriculture Association