IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

China's Role in the 2007-2008 Global Food Price Boom and Bust


  • Colin A. Carter
  • Funing Zhong
  • Jing Zhu


The 2007-2008 agricultural commodity price boom was short-lived, just like past agricultural commodity price spikes. Grain prices doubled or even tripled from 2006 to 2008, while accompanying food prices rose sharply. But prices then fell steeply in the latter part of 2008. Some international agencies argued that the high prices in 2008 were going to persist for many years, partly because of growing food import demand in China and other parts of Asia. So this article investigates China's role in the 2007-2008 global food price boom and bust. We find that contrary to some claims, income, demand and trade growth in China cannot be blamed for the increase in global food prices in 2007-2008. In fact, in China, growth in meat consumption in the urban areas has slowed down since the 1990s and per capita urban meat consumption has been very constant since 2002. In the rural areas, per capita meat consumption has also stabilized in the last five years. China did not overreact to the 2007-2008 food price boom and one could even argue that strong government intervention in China's grain sector was a stabilizing factor in the world grain markets over the last two years. Copyright (c) 2009 The Authors. Journal compilation (c) The Agricultural Economics Society and the European Association of Agricultural Economists 2009.

Suggested Citation

  • Colin A. Carter & Funing Zhong & Jing Zhu, 2009. "China's Role in the 2007-2008 Global Food Price Boom and Bust," EuroChoices, The Agricultural Economics Society, vol. 8(SpecialIs), pages 17-23, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:eurcho:v:8:y:2009:i:specialissuechina:p:17-23

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: link to full text
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Finger, Robert, 2010. "Evidence of slowing yield growth - The example of Swiss cereal yields," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(2), pages 175-182, April.
    2. Erwin Schmid & Franz Sinabell, 2004. "On the Choice of Farm Management Practices after the Reform of the Common Agricultural Policy in 2003," WIFO Working Papers 233, WIFO.
    3. Stefan Mann, 2005. "Different Perspectives on Cross-Compliance," Environmental Values, White Horse Press, vol. 14(4), pages 471-482, November.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Zhong, Funing & Xiang, Jing & Zhu, Jing, 2012. "Impact of demographic dynamics on food consumption — A case study of energy intake in China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(4), pages 1011-1019.

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bla:eurcho:v:8:y:2009:i:specialissuechina:p:17-23. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Wiley-Blackwell Digital Licensing) or (Christopher F. Baum). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.