China, which doubled meat consumption in the past two decades, may boost international soybean purchases 33 percent to 66.9 million metric tons by 2014, a 16.6 million-ton increase that is more than Iowa, the largest U.S. grower, produced last year, government data show. U.S. farmers are cutting back on planting, meaning prices will rise 21 percent to $16.80 a bushel by Dec. 31, a Bloomberg survey of 20 analysts shows.
Almost half the world’s pork comes from China, which has 689 million pigs and will be responsible for all of this year’s increase in global supply, the U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates. That’s adding to China’s dependence on raw-material imports from Brazil to Australia to the U.S., making it vulnerable to inflation that Premier Wen Jiabao has pledged to combat without derailing economic growth.
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