(Yicai Global) Jan. 20 -- The Chinese government is putting together measures that will support the soybean industry to ensure fair incomes for farmers and boost the processing capacity of soybeans and oilseeds, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs said on its website yesterday.
The policies will benefit soybean production, storage, and processing, with the aim of bringing market prices within a reasonable range, according to an industry panel organized by the ministry on the same day.
The central government is keen to hike production capacity and national self-sufficiency in soybeans, the ministry added, without disclosing any further details about the policies or when they will be introduced.
China imports more than 80 percent of its soybean needs, making it the county’s most imported food crop.
The panel wants the local governments of soybean-producing regions to focus on stabilizing planting areas and raising the yield per unit area. Soybean processing firms were asked to plan their purchasing and processing strategies well, develop new products, and build their brands.
And local soybean industry associations must enhance their ability to supervise the market and set up early warning mechanisms, as well as help enterprises in the sector to upgrade their production technology, the panel noted.
China’s soybean planting area expanded by 1.83 million hectares to 10.27 million ha last year, the most since 1958, and the government is asking farmers to add another 670,000 hectares or more this year, Zeng Yande, head of the ministry’s development and planning department, said at a news conference on Jan. 18.
China’s soybean production jumped by 3.9 million tons last year to 20.3 million tons, exceeding 20 million tons for the first time, Zeng added, noting that as a result, the country’s soybean self-sufficiency rate rose 3 percentage points.
Editor: Martin Kadiev