BEIJING, Dec. 8, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- American environmentalist, Lester Russell Brown, in the 1990s wrote a book, Who Will Feed China? where he conjectures that the Chinese might create a food crisis for the world. But fortunately, China has a per-capita grain supply of 470 kg, which is higher than the global average.
Hybrid rice, whose output can be 10-20 percent higher than that of normal rice, has contributed handsomely to China's food security. Yuan Longping, in his 90s, is still involved in the experiments to produce rice with greater yield. In November, a third-generation strain of hybrid rice developed by his team produced a record harvest by double cropping.
"I dreamed of resting under big panicles of super hybrid rice, of breeding hybrid rice with high and higher yield which staves off hunger from the Chinese," he said. "My another dream is to have hybrid rice covering the whole world."
The first part of the dream has been realized with China becoming self-sufficient in feeding its own population. Yuan's second dream is also coming true with hundreds of Chinese agricultural experts having been sent to many countries and regions in Asia, Africa, the Caribbean and Asia-Pacific to implement cooperation projects in agriculture, improving their self-sufficiency in rice.
Tu Shengbin, associate research fellow at the Chengdu Institute of Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, says the academy has proposed to create a Belt and Road food security corridor to increase the production capacity of countries participating in the Belt and Road Initiative by pooling in their resources.
"This is the solution to our global food security crisis, the fundamental solution to maintain food security," he said. "Closing the border and restricting exports cannot resolve food security crisis. Only through strengthened cooperation can we solve the problem."
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