Journal of Geographical Sciences ›› 2006, Vol. 16 ›› Issue (4): 396-404.doi: 10.1007/s11442-006-0402-x

• Climate and Environmental Change • Previous Articles     Next Articles

The changing regional distribution of grain production in China in the 21st century

YIN Peihong1, FANG Xiuqi1, TIAN Qing1, MA Yuling2   

  1. 1. School of Geography, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China|
    2. National Disaster Reduction Center of China, Beijing 100053, China
  • Received:2006-07-10 Revised:2007-09-08 Online:2006-12-25 Published:2006-12-25
  • Supported by:

    National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.40571165; No.40271115


This paper examines the changing regional distribution of grain production in China. Based on the analysis of data from county statistics for the period 2000–2003, major differences in the main grain-output regions in China can be observed. The main grain-producing areas have shifted from the south to the north of China. New grain production regions have been also added to western China since the late 1990s. The per capita grain consumption in one third of China’s main grain-producing counties has fallen below 400 kg; most of these areas are located in southern China. In the new millennium, Northeast China, the central-south North China, and the arid and semi-arid regions of Northwest China produced three quarters of the surplus grains. Most of these areas are located in regions susceptible to environmental change. The amount of grain production in these regions shows high fluctuations. It is argued here that further studies of recent environmental changes as well as a risk assessment of China’s food security in main grain-output regions are needed.

Key words: grain production, main grain-output regions, regional pattern, regional differences, China