very cow that produces six tons of milk a year only brings in 240 yuan (US$36) annually for its owner, according to May 2015 statistics from China’s Ministry of Agriculture. That amount showed a 95 percent year-onyear decline. Dairy farming in China has been expanding rapidly since the year 2000, and many milk-producing enterprises have been building their own production plants. A growing number of these businesses are also using inexpensive overseas milk suppliers, further damaging the domestic industry.
The Dairy Association of China reported that China’s dairy self-sufficiency rate is around 70 percent, and that number is falling rapidly. Experts cautioned that in the near future it could drop to 60 or even 50 percent, sounding alarm bells for the domestic milk industry.