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Nation's grain reserves remain at healthy level, says administration

Updated: Apr 01,2021 07:38 AM    Xinhua

The supply of food in the Chinese market is generally good and grain reserves remain at a relatively high level, the National Food and Strategic Reserves Administration said on March 31.

The stocks-to-use ratio of grain in China, an important indicator of food security, is well above the global warning line set by the United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization, Qin Yuyun, the administration's head of grain reserves, said at a news briefing.

"Major varieties such as rice and wheat can meet demand for more than a year," Qin said.

Large and medium-sized cities can ensure the supply of finished grain and oil products for more than 20 days, he added.

Meanwhile, the reserve structure has been optimized, with the inventories of companies seeing large increases. "Companies' ability to withstand risks and self-regulate has been enhanced," Qin said.

The grain storage of rural households and urban residents has also increased, he added.

Autumn grain purchases had proceeded smoothly, with work ongoing in Northeast China, the administration said.

As of March 25, companies had purchased 152 million metric tons of grain.

The Heilongjiang provincial government's procurement at a set minimum purchase price had enabled farmers in the northeastern province to sell the grain they planted and protected their benefits, Qin said.

Though summer grain only accounts for a quarter of overall grain production, the administration has begun preparing for this year's purchases.

Working groups have been dispatched to major producing areas including Shandong and Henan provinces to guide the preparation work, while experts visited regions that consume large amounts of grain, such as Guangdong province, to research market demand, Qin said.

Wang Xiaohui, chief analyst at the China National Grain and Oils Information Center, said a rise in the price of corn had seen the consumption of feed wheat increase significantly and hit a record high.

"Our need for edible wheat is steady, at about 90 million tons a year," he added.

China produced 134 million tons of wheat last year. It imported 8.38 million tons, the most since the country joined the World Trade Organization in 2001, Wang said.

The country will see a bumper wheat harvest this year as the growing area and yields are expected to increase thanks to better weather conditions, he added.

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