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Story Publication logo March 6, 2020

How China’s Demand for Soybeans is Fueling the Destruction of the Amazon Rainforest

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Image by Heriberto Araújo. Brazil, 2019.
English

China's demand for meat—for food security—drives deforestation in Brazil. As the world's largest...

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Trucks carry soy, corn, and beef along one of the main highways cutting across the Amazon basin. Much of these food commodities are bound for China. Image by Heriberto Araújo. Brazil, 2019.
Trucks carry soy, corn, and beef along one of the main highways cutting across the Amazon basin. Much of these food commodities are bound for China. Image by Heriberto Araújo. Brazil, 2019.

China is by far the world's largest importer of soy, which it uses mostly as feed for pigs, and Beijing has started to make big investments in Brazil because the majority of its soy comes from the country. One of these investments includes a potential new railway—the so-called "grain train"—that would link Brazilian soy fields to its ports. Unfortunately, much of this farmland sits in the heart of the Amazon rainforest. Melissa Chan speaks with the host of UN Dispatch, Mark Goldberg, about the relationship between China, Brazil, soybeans, and climate change.

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