China plans heavy investments on Australian food supply chain
30 November 2012
China's Heilongjiang Feng agricultural group has purchased around 30,000 hectares of grain growing land in the past month, after buying 6,500 hectares near Ongerup for over $20 million. This comes following the purchase of the 230 square kilometre Lake Varley property earlier this month.
The company plans to buy more than 100,000 hectares of land and create a direct supply link to China with the construction of rail linking the land to Albany port. According to Newdegate farmer Trevor de Landgrafft, this was unrealistic and it was highly unlikely given there was no way it could be profitable.
He said that was just propaganda that went along with the whole sweep of the thing. Australian farmers understood very well where the margins were in farming and it did not include building infrastructure that was going to go to port, he added.
According to de Landgrafft, there was reason for local farmers to be concerned.
Whenever a corporate bought land, the locals would be concerned about whether the local community was going to miss out and people were going to disappear.
Heilongjiang Feng is an arm of Beidahuang Group, ultimately owned by the Chinese government and its purchase of land is seen as another piece of its plan for the creation of a supply chain that would operate independently of state grain handler CBH.