China's forest food output stood at 226 million tonnes in 2023, with per capita output reaching about 130 kilograms and leading the world, according to data from the National Forestry and Grassland Administration (NFGA).
The total output value of China's forest food in 2023 is estimated to surpass 2.2 trillion yuan (about $310 billion), the administration said.
Forest food refers to food produced in forests or woodlands, including edible fruits, flowers, leaves, and branches.
China has more than 3.4 billion mu (226.7 million hectares) of forests and 8,000 kinds of woody plants, which contain rich food resources. According to Gao Junkai, an official from NFGA, forests help boost food production, and China has a huge potential for harvesting food from forests.
"Developing economic forests and the under-forest economy plus getting foods from forest resources are key measures to enhance China's food supply capacity, diversify food sources and improve the quality of people's life. It is also an important part of the building of a diversified food supply system," Gao added.
At present, about 124 million individuals are engaged in economic forests and the under-forest economy nationwide, accounting for about a quarter of the country's rural population.