China’s Nutrient Availability and Sources, 1950-91

Qingbin Wang, Helen H. Jensen, Stanley R. Johnson
September 1993  [93-WP 113]

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Wang, Q., H.H. Jensen, and S.R. Johnson. 1993. "China’s Nutrient Availability and Sources, 1950-91." Working paper 93-WP 113. Center for Agricultural and Rural Development, Iowa State University.


The rapid changes in China's economy and data availability have led to the need for a quantitative assessment of its food and nutrient situation. This paper first reports estimates of China's average per capita daily energy, protein, and fat availability through yearly food balance sheets for 1950-91. Then policy impacts on the nutrient changes are examined. Results suggest that China's nutritional status has improved significantly over the period, especially since the 1978 economic reforms. Government policy has been a key factor influencing the nutrient changes since 1950 and will continue to play an important role in China's nutritional improvement.