Can China feed itself

Food security: can the Chinese way be a model for Africa?

In general terms, China can currently be regarded as "nutritionally safe" with a calorie supply of 3194 kcal per capita and day (data status 2017 / FAOSTAT). However, as is often the case with average values, this is only half the story. There are still areas in which not everyone can eat two meals a day.

The international organization responsible for this topic, the FAO, has different information about the exact number of starving people in China. According to the latest figures available in the FAOSTAT database for the years 2009-2011 (average) there is a value of 3.0 percent malnourished people, i.e. 42 million out of a population of 1.39 billion people (2010). After all, that is only a third of the people who were counted as undernourished ten years earlier.

According to the latest FAO report The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2020 (SOFI, Tab. A1.1, Print p. 168), China falls below the threshold of 2.5 percent of the population of undernourished people for the years 2017-2019 (just like Germany and other high-income countries). With an estimated population of now 1.45 billion people (2018), that would be a maximum of 43.5 million. However, because of the possible error of estimation, estimates below the threshold mentioned are not meaningful. However, data from micro-surveys are not known, which is why in Table A1.2, Print p. 181 in the corresponding column for China (as well as for Germany) there is also “n.r.” ie “data not reported”.