While malnutrition remains a problem in China, particularly in rural areas, the country has made much progress in recent decades. Here are 10 things to know about the status of nutrition in China.
1) An estimated 12.7 million children are stunted, meaning that they are too short for their age due to chronic malnutrition. That’s a population the size of Tokyo.
2) Location has a big impact on nutritional status. The risk of underweight and stunting is 3-4 times higher for children in rural areas than for those in cities. In 2010, 20 percent of children under 5 living in poor regions were stunted, compared to 5 percent in urban areas.
3) In 2010, 28 percent of rural children between 6 and 12 months old and 21 percent between 13 and 24 months still suffered from anaemia.
4) However, the overall situation is improving. China reduced the level of undernourishment in the country from 23.9 percent in 1990-92 to 9.3 percent in 2014-16.
5) Rates of child malnutrition are dropping. From 1990 to 2010, the number of underweight children under 5 fell by 74 percent and rates of stunting dropped by 70 percent. Current levels are lower than most other developing countries.