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Food security and food safety summit wraps up in Beijing

DATE:2014-11-20       SOURCE:China Daily

When China's Food Security and Food Safety Strategy Summit for 2014 finished, in Beijing, on Nov 18, the participants had confronted some important global issues in workshops and roundtables on food strategies, trade, agricultural technology innovation, sustainable agriculture and agricultural policy reforms.


The summit, whose theme was "Sustainably Improving the Support Capacity of Food Security and Food Safety with Reform and Innovation", attracted more than 200 representatives of domestic and international government departments, think tanks, and enterprises.


Li Wei, minister of the Development Research Center of the State Council, addressed the opening ceremony by pointing out that agriculture is the foundation of a country and ranks at the top in national governance and that, although human activities have moved far beyond basic agriculture and demand many things that are far apart from food, the fact that food is irreplaceable doesn't change, so agriculture's position won't change.


Li went on to say that food, energy, and financial security are three major economic security issues, so a food security strategy is an important part of national security strategies, and since China is on the path to become a high-income country, it is critical to develop new national food security concepts and an efficient, open, sustainable food security system.


He added that the past 30 years of reforms and opening-up have changed China's socialist economy in many areas, including food, in both amount and types and China is now working to improve food security and food safety, but still, faces a huge gap. And, the question of how to meet urban and rural food needs in quantity and quality will be a challenging task over the long run. China will also need to consider how to control production capacity in future agricultural development, recover agricultural resources, and keep the impact on grain production to a minimum.


In dealing with the challenge of food security, he concluded, the basic way is to make China's agriculture more modern through reforms and innovation. And, since food security is a common goal, the research center has given a lot of attention to food security and will continue to cooperate with government departments, international institutions, and big enterprises on Chinese and global food security.


Han Jun, as the recently appointed vice-director of the Central Leading Group on Financial and Economic Affairs, told the gathering that China's food security and food safety problems, against a background of rapid urbanization, call for more advanced technology, moderate production scale, market competitiveness, and a sustainable ecology, if it expects to modernize its agriculture.


China now faces three major problems: water shortages, decreasing farmland, and the rising cost and age of laborers. So, it has to needs scientific and technological innovation for sustainable agriculture, as well as more opening up to the outside world. China will not look back and there is no way back.


The summit, with support from the Development Research Center of the State Council's Rural Economy Dept and China's Economy Almanac Press, was first held in 2013 and has been a convenient site for communication between domestic and international business leaders and scholars in agricultural science and technology innovation projects. And, enterprises can use it to look for trade and investment opportunities.


With food security becoming a global issue, China is playing a greater role in dealing with food security problems and is working hard to improve international food supplies. The summit had delegates from the Central Leading group on Rural Affairs, Ministry of Agriculture, National Development and Reform Commission, China Food and Drug Administration, and agricultural departments of the United States, Canada, and New Zealand.


DRC Minister Li Wei delivers a speech at the opening ceremonty of the 2014 China's Food Security and Food Safety Strategy Summit.


Han Jun, vice-director of the Central Leading Group on Financial and Economic Affairs, addresses at the opening ceremonty of the 2014 China's Food Security and Food Safety Strategy Summit.

2014 China's Food Security and Food Safety Strategy Summit, in Beijing

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