As part of its nationwide nutrition campaign, China is urging citizens to drink more milk to fight calcium deficiency. Which, considering us Asians’ tolerance for lactose, is a little like pushing rabbits to eat more sirloin steak, but fortunately they’re promoting soy bean consumption and production as well. SCMP reports:
The China Food and Nutrition Development Plan for 2014-2020, issued on Monday by the State Council, aims to raise average milk consumption to about 100 millilitres a day by 2020, up from the 15ml per day under the 2000-2010 plan.
The other specific food named for development was soya bean, the cultivation of which in the major production region of Heilongjiang fell by half in the past nine years. China, once self-sufficient in soya bean cultivation, is the world’s largest importer.
He Jiguo, dean of the nutrition and food safety department at China Agricultural University, said the plan’s emphasis on dairy was due to mainlanders’ traditionally low intake of calcium. Soya bean products were targeted because they have the highest protein content of plant foods.
“The point for the dairy sector it that it must address the management of milk processing, to rebuild public trust,” He said, referring to lingering concerns over safety. Supporting the soya bean sector was necessary because “China lags behind other countries in seed breeding and processing technology.”
It’s a step in the right direction, but considering milk’s reputation in China, the public’s understandably a tad hesitant. To entice milk consumers, China might have to open a breast milk bar staffed by Mo Lulu.
This move comes off the government’s push to up breast milk consumption in light of tainted milk scandals last year.