Major flooding in China has destroyed crops just as its major food staple rice was coming to harvest, reports China CNN. It is estimated that around 13 million acres of cropland have been flooded, destroying some $1.7 billion in crops, $19 billion in infrastructure and impacting around 55 million Chinese people.
The report said China has already released about 60 million metric tons (MT) of rice, 50 million MT of corn and around 760,00 MT of soybeans in an effort to keep prices from rising too far. China’s grain imports rose 21% to around 61 million MT the first half of this year.
Food prices in China have risen by 13% this year, despite Chinese officials releasing the aforementioned food stocks. Pork prices are up 86% this year and fresh vegetables up 6%.
The CNN report said China may have to buy in as much food as it can before it allows the trade war with the US to escalate. The US exported more than 9 million MT of soybeans, 100,000 MT of wheat, and close to 65,000 MT of corn to China in the first half of this year, according to China customs data.