Chen Xiwen: The concept of food security should be extended

2022-06-24 0 By

The COVID-19 outbreak has made it clear that as a populous country, it faces multiple risks when it relies on imports from international markets to secure vital food supplies.As a special industry, agriculture is facing multiple risks.In the past, it was often said that agriculture was subject to double risks, namely natural risks and market risks, but now, with the development of The Times and the change of the situation, it is facing more and more risks.First, the risk of natural disasters in the importing countries.When there is a risk of natural disasters in the source countries, it affects their output, which in turn affects our imports.For example, in 2021, the United States, Canada, Brazil and Argentina, the major grain producers in north and South America, all suffered serious natural disasters, which may have a certain impact on China’s import of soybeans and corn this year and next.Second, the risk of epidemics.There are risks in agricultural production and livestock production, but the risk of disease outbreaks in human society can cause supply chain disruptions, for example by making shipping more difficult and expensive.In some American supermarkets, many produce shelves are often empty. Why?It’s not the supply of these products, it’s the supply chain that can’t keep up, the transportation that can’t keep up.Third, oil prices have surged in recent months to a seven-year high due to rising energy prices.The rise in international energy prices will inevitably cause crops such as grain, oil and sugar to replace energy sources. If cars eat too much grain and oil, it will also pose a threat to human food supply.Fourth, the speculation of international capital on bulk agricultural products will bring relatively large price risks to the international trade of agricultural products.Fifthly, the international situation is complicated and changeable under the current situation of great changes. The suppression of China by relevant countries will inevitably lead to certain geopolitical risks in the import of bulk agricultural products.In the face of these cumulative risks, we must realize that a considerable part of China’s current food supply depends on the international market, and relying on the international market, we must strive to prevent and manage these risks, so as to ensure uninterrupted supply.Some people think that with money they can buy food, import more agricultural products and save their land and water.Last year, 18 countries restricted exports of food and other agricultural products, disrupting global supply chains and sparking panic and sharp price swings.This kind of thing has happened in recent years. Every time there is a disturbance in the international community, countries cover their “food bags” first.In order to ensure the safety of domestic food supply under such complicated circumstances, in addition to a series of work such as domestic production, domestic supply and domestic dispatching, it is also very important to sum up the experience of stabilizing food supply in the past two years.First, change the concept of ensuring food security to the overall direction of ensuring food supply.The concept of ensuring food security has played an important role in ensuring food security.Of course, food security is the basis of food security, a large amount of food is converted from grain, or can only be produced after substituting resources with grain, emphasizing the security of food supply must not relax the importance of food security.From the actual situation, people’s consumption is not only grain, but also a lot of other important food. Now Our country can achieve absolute food security, which is inseparable from the abundant supply of other non-staple food.If the supply of other non-staple food such as oil, sugar, meat, milk, aquatic products, fruits and vegetables is not so abundant, the food ration security will be greatly threatened.The concept and scope of food supply security is much larger than food security.After completing the building of a moderately prosperous society in all respects, it is not enough to achieve food security alone. There is also a need for a large amount of food other than grain. Although these foods are converted from grain or replaced by the resources used to produce grain, the amount of grain directly consumed is gradually decreasing, and more and more other foods are consumed.It is based on this perspective that the concept of food supply security should be established. Of course, it does not mean that food security is not important. Food security is the foundation of food supply security.Look from the current reality, besides rations of other important non-staple food consumption increase faster and faster, we must insist on to ensure national food security, on the basis of efforts to further increase the other important aspect of food, there must be a whole idea, not only satisfied with food security, at the same time of ensuring food security,You also see gaps and problems in other important food supplies.Second, set up big food concept.For decades, the concept of community has been proposed, in addition to food, in China there are other a variety of agricultural natural resources, to play a good potential of the agricultural natural resources, produce more diverse food, for example, edible fungus, woody grain and oil, grains mixed beans, etc., there is a very important aspect, is to develop the forage grass industry,Only in this way can the overall security of the country’s food supply be ensured.(The author is a member of the Academic committee of “The Discovery of Rural China”, chief expert of The China Rural Revitalization Research Institute, Hunan Normal University, and chairman of the Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee of the NPC;Village Discovery translated from: Leadership Literature Review, Next March 2022)