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From self-sufficiency to grain contribution

The western world used to worry that China couldn't feed its people, but today's China has proved that not only can it feed itself, it can also help the world.

After 60 years of struggle and development, the Chinese people have bid farewell to a life of poverty and the lack of food. The grain self-sufficiency rate has remained above 95 percent for years.

In 2007, rural per capita net income has grown to 4,140 yuan ($606), five times that of 1978. The total volume of grain yield in 2008 reached 525 million tons, compared to 113 million tons in 1949.

In 2005, China halted receiving grain assistance from other countries and donated 577,000 tons of grain instead, becoming the third largest grain donator in the world, just after the US and the European Union.

At present, the Chinese per capita nutrition intake has risen above the world average level. The number of poor in rural areas has declined from 250 million in 1978 to today's 14.79 million, making China one of the few countries to have reduced poverty levels in its population.

Henk-Jan Brinkman, senior economic analyst with the World Food Program, said China had "set an example" for the elimination of poverty and hunger.

Fang Cheng, senior economist at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), said: "China has made tremendous progress in poverty alleviation since the country adopted its policy of reform and opening-up in 1978."

"As the most populous country in the world, China has successfully fed a population making up about 20 percent of the world's total. The country's significance for the world's grain security is self-evident," he said.

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 Source : Xinhua  Editor: Ivy
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