Growth and Development of Preschool Children (12–60 Months): A Review of the Effect of Dairy Intake. David C. Clark, Christopher J. Cifelli, Matthew A Pikosky. Nutrients 2020, 12(11), 3556; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12113556
Currently browsing posts about: China
I am indebted to FoodNavigator-Asia.com for this intriguing bit of food news: “Health is wealth: Younger Chinese consumers make up 60% of bird’s nest purchases on JD.com.”
According to data collected by JD….consumption of bird’s nest was growing fast among this group of highly educated younger generation. The data also found that the average annual growth rate of bird’s nest sales on JD.com grew at more than 50% over the past five years…. “the younger generation in China, especially those born after 1990s are paying more attention to health as they are busy and might not eat well or rest enough.”
While edible bird’s nest is a nourishing food long prized in Chinese culture for promoting good health and skin benefits, it used to be exclusively reserved for the Chinese royal family due to its rarity and high price. However…it was now much “easier and convenient for everyday consumers to buy high-quality bird’s nest at a good price online.”
Edible bird’s nests are widely available for purchase in the U.S., imported, and not cheap.
See, for example:
Venture capitalists: I see an opportunity here.
Every now and then I run into an excellent source of information about things I know nothing about. I’ve just discovered Purdue University’s Ag Economy Baromoter, which tracks the opinions of producers of corn and soybeans.
Big Ag feels pretty good about current agriculture and trade policies, probably because USDA’s agricultural support system ihistorically has been firmly rigged in their favor.
If Purdue asked small and medium-sized producers, it might get a different stiory.
BakeryandSnacks.com, an industry newsletter I subscribe to, occasionally collects its articles into special editions. This one is on selling baked goods in China. The effects of these trends on public health? One can only guess.
Chinese appetites for bakery products continues to grow unheeded, despite a market saturated with Asian brands and the continued interest in European offerings.
Following Bakery China 2019 (May 6-9) held in Shanghai, BakeryandSnacks examines the world’s fastest growing sector, using information gleaned from the coalface [translation: real working conditions] and brand data from market researchers.
- China’s bakery market: Growing faster than the country’s GDP: Aligned with the exploding growth in China’s bakery sector, Bakery China has grown from relatively small beginnings in 1997 to an enormous trade event occupying more than 200,000m2 of the Shanghai New International Expo Center in China… Listen now
- China’s biscuit boom: Biscuit consumption is soaring in China, on the back that these intrinsic snacks offer pleasure and convenience, a boost of energy as well as satisfying hunger. They are also regarded as a well-heeled gift… Read
- Creating trends in China’s bakery market: Rich Products Corporation has been at the forefront of development in China’s bakery industry since its entry three decades ago and today is considered a trend originator… Watch now
- French macarons: The symbol of premiumization in China: The demand for Western style products in China has been increasing and French pastries are a hit, especially the taste for premium luxury goods like macarons, according to Daxue Consulting… Read
- Cream of the crop: The dairy boom in China’s bakery market: Irish dairy processor Glanbia is capitalizing on the Chinese consumer’s growing penchant for full-fat dairy creams – especially prevalent in raft of exquisitely decorated cream-topped cakes on show at Bakery China… Watch now
- A true breadwinner: The rise of sourdough in Asia Pacific: Michael Bultel, head of Ingredients and Baking Center, Asia Pacific, for Lesaffre looks at the implications of the increasing appeal of artisanal bread in Asia Pacific… Read
As I may have mentioned previously, I have trouble understanding the ins and outs of trade policy. Fortunately, I subscribe to Politico Morning Agriculture, whose writers are diligent in sorting out the complexities of what our government is doing with respect to trade and what it means.
Here’s what Politico is saying about our current trade dispute with the People’s Republic of China.
- 2019: $6.5 billion
- 2018: $16.8 billion
- 2017: $21.8 billion
These figures are from USDA’s latest Outlook for Agricultural trade.
Much of the drop is in soybean exports: US farmers shipped $17 billion worth of soybeans worldwide in 2019, down from $21.6 billion last year. Shipments to China accounted for much of the difference.
The US usually runs an agricultural trade surplus (we sell more abroad than we import). The USDA says the trade surplus is $8 billion in 2019, down from $15.8 billion in fiscal 2018 and $21.1 billion in fiscal 2017.
Politico also reports that the Trump Administration is doing what it can to relieve the pain experienced by US soybean producers [pain that the administration’s policies caused in the first place]. It has promised between $15 billion and $20 billion in bailouts.
The real burden will fall on taxpayers and heartland farmers.
If the president moves ahead with 25 percent tariffs on everything China exports to the United States, it could amount to a tax hike of more than $2,000 on the average American family, swamping the reduction they won from Trump’s signature legislative achievement — the 2017 tax law.
The pain will be felt most acutely by lower-income voters who rely on cheap imports and Midwestern farmers who make up critical slices of Trump’s political base and will help decide the outcome of the 2020 election.
As to who is responsible for this mess? According to Politico again, “China says U.S. ‘solely to blame’ for collapse of trade talks.”
How will this end? Badly for U.S. agriculture, I’m guessing.
We need a rational food policy in this country, big time.
The BMJ (the new name for what was formerly the British Medical Journal) has just published a report by Susan Greenhalgh, an anthropologist and China specialist at Harvard, of how Coca-Cola, working through the International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI), got the Chinese government to focus its anti-obesity efforts on promoting physical activity rather than dietary changes.
Professor Greenhalgh documented industry influence on Chinese health policy through review of published work as well as interviews with key players in this drama.
- The BMJ Press Release
- Greenhalgh’s article—“Making China safe for Coke: how Coca-Cola shaped obesity science and policy in China“—(plus a podcast interview)
- An accompanying editorial by Martin McKee, Sarah Steele, and David Stuckler: “The Hidden Power of Corporations.”
A more thorough report of her investigation with details of her interviews was released at the same time by the Journal of Public Health Policy: “Soda industry influence on obesity science and policy in China.” This report comes with extensive supplemental information about her methods and interview details (these explain why training in anthropology is useful for this kind of work and provides information not otherwise available).
For readers familiar with Coca-Cola’s funding of the Global Energy Balance Network (GEBN), this is a familiar story.
I tell the GEBN story in a chapter in my recently released book, Unsavory Truth: How Food Companies Skew the Science of What We Eat.
One surprise in writing that book was how often ILSI turns up in its pages. ILSI positions itself as an independent “nonprofit, worldwide organization whose mission is to provide science that improves human health and well-being and safeguards the environment,” but it was founded by Coca-Cola and is largely supported by food and beverage companies. It works in many countries to promote food-industry interests.
Greenhalgh’s articles thoroughly expose how this organization accomplishes its objectives. If you would like to know more about it, UCSF Food Industry Documents Library can help, as I learned about from this tweet.
Greenhalgh’s investigation has received extensive press coverage.
I was particularly interested in the account by Crossfit’s Derek Fields and Russ Greene, which provides further documentation of the close connections between Chinese health agencies, ILSI, and programs funded by Coca-Cola.
This is from one of those daily newsletters I get about what’s happening in the food industry. This one covers baked goods, snacks, and candy. And this particular collection of articles deals with chocolate as an instrument of international trade policy.
Chocolate’s use in bakery is a booming business in China: Once perceived as an exotic delicacy – bought only as a luxury gift or an extravagant treat – the Chinese consumers’ taste for chocolate is growing and the ingredient is quickly cementing a niche for itself in bakery. Read more
- Penchant for Western products supports China’s bakery boom, says analyst: China’s bakery sector is a thunderous market, spurred on by consumers who have a great desire to develop their knowledge of Western products. Read more
- ‘Even a niche in China is lucrative’: Rich Products Corporation: China is set to become one of the most attractive cereals and bakery markets worldwide, with the bakery sector reaching $47bn by 2020 as more people chose to eat snacks on the go. Read more
- Be it baguette or mooncake: China’s dynamic bakery market shows no signs of slow-down: Chinese appetites for bakery products continues to grow unabated, despite a market saturated with Asian brands and a continued upswing in foreign offerings. Read more
- China to familiarize Western market with ‘pinyin’ baked treats: China’s diverse bakery industry – encompassing bakers of traditional ‘pinyin’ (literally translated as ‘Chinese style cakes and snacks’) and producers of modern items like croissants and waffles – is growing at a rate that far exceeds most other segments. Read more
I can’t help thinking about all those calories in chocolate-laden baked goods, and their effects on Chinese waistlines….
Jia-Chen Fu. The Other Milk: Reinventing Soy in Republican China. University of Washington Press, 2019.
Here’s my blurb for this one:
The Other Milk tells a fascinating story—how nutrition science transformed the place of soybeans in the Chinese diet from humble components of traditional cuisine to instruments of physical and social development, only to be replaced by dairy foods as markers of modernity. This book is a superb example of how cultural history, cuisine, science, and globalization intersect around one food–soybeans.
Here is a small taste: Fu, an assistant professor of Chinese at Emory University, explains that the use of soybeans in Chinese cuisine dates back to 500 B.C. or so, but she begins her analysis in the early 1900s with an account of Li Shizeng’s promotion of soy milk—in Paris, of all places.
Li’s soybean experiment in Paris proved short-lived, but his insistence that soybeans offered a key to a modern, industrial China did not fail to impress his compatriots. Popular accounts celebrated the soybean’s many industrial and gastronomic uses and as late as 1920, highlighted Li’s foresight and ingenuity in promoting an indigenous product, doujiang (soybean milk), as both more nutritious and sanitary than cow’s milk, on the world stage.
If the soybean could signify modern, industrial development, could it also challenge perceptions of Chinese physical and nutritional precarity, of China as “the sick man of Asia”? When coupled with a newly emergent discursive concept of the Chinese diet as a thing scientists and social scientists could measure and adjust, the aspiration grew for soybeans to change not just Chinese history but Chinese bodies.