September 26, 2011
China's corn deficit may hit 15 million tonnes by 2015
China will likely face a corn shortfall of around 15 million tonnes by 2015, as demand is growing faster than domestic output, a China Feed Industry Association senior official said.
By 2015, domestic output is expected to reach 205 million tonnes, compared with an estimated 180 million tonnes in 2011, but demand will likely be 220 million tonnes by that time, said Li Xirong, executive deputy president of the association.
"It's very difficult to produce 205 million tonnes by 2015," Li said, referring to problems of increasing acreage and per-unit yields.
The shortfall will likely narrow, as domestic corn production has the potential to increase. Meanwhile, the government is restricting the expansion of corn processors, curbing demand.
China's per-hectare corn output is only 5.4 tonnes, slightly higher than the world average, but about 22% lower than the European Union, he said.
"To meet domestic demand, a moderate quantity of corn imports is inevitable, but importing too much will pressure the domestic market," he said.