Urbanization can benefit agricultural production with large-scale farming in China

Wang, Sitong; Bai, Xuemei; Zhang, Xiaoling; Reis, Stefan ORCID:; Chen, Deli; Xu, Jianming; Gu, Baojing. 2021 Urbanization can benefit agricultural production with large-scale farming in China. Nature Food, 2 (3). 183-191.

Full text not available from this repository.


Urbanization has often been considered a threat to food security since it is likely to reduce the availability of croplands. Using spatial statistics and scenario analysis, we show that an increase in China’s urbanization level from 56% in 2015 to 80% in 2050 would actually release 5.8 million hectares of rural land for agricultural production—equivalent to 4.1% of China’s total cropland area in 2015. Even considering the relatively lower land fertility of these new croplands, crop production in 2050 would still be 3.1–4.2% higher than in 2015. In addition, cropland fragmentation could be reduced with rural land release and a decrease in rural population, benefiting large-scale farming and environmental protection. To ensure this, it is necessary to adopt an integrated urban–rural development model, with reclamation of lands previously used as residential lots. These insights into the urbanization and food security debate have important policy implications for global regions undergoing rapid urbanization.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
UKCEH and CEH Sections/Science Areas: Atmospheric Chemistry and Effects (Science Area 2017-)
ISSN: 2662-1355
Additional Keywords: agriculture, ecology
NORA Subject Terms: Ecology and Environment
Agriculture and Soil Science
Related URLs:
Date made live: 30 Mar 2021 10:45 +0 (UTC)

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item

Document Downloads

Downloads for past 30 days

Downloads per month over past year

More statistics for this item...