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The Chinese food economy has undergone significant reforms affecting the production, consumption and trade of food over the past 15 years. This paper seeks to analyse the changes that have occurred in the structure of the Chinese food industries and to provide insights on the current market structure. The grains industry is used to demonstrate that, although free market supply and demand forces play an increasing role in the food industries, the government continues to fundamentally shape the structure of these industries through its involvement in the purchase and sale of outputs and inputs. An attempt is made to explore the implications of the analysis for model building and empirical work.


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