“This is a major opportunity for the dairy industry,” Lyons said. “We must consider what are the requirements of this population and how can we meet it more quickly?”
China’s own dairy industry
The country is also looking beyond borders to make the Chinese dairy industry more sustainable. Imported alfalfa continues to grow; trade in dairy cow numbers is holding steady, and Chinese dairy companies Yili and Mengniu are becoming global players.
The country is also seeing a vertical integration as the Chinese government is calling for large-scale, higher-production farms. Programs have been put in place to help support alfalfa production, breeding and more than 300-head herds. Nestlé plans to build a dairy farming institute and Alltech China will be assisting with providing worldrenowned experts and nutritional technologies.
“One of our closest customers in China told us four things we must remember about doing business in China — the leader must be involved, the company must have its own technology, it has to have its own management style and culture, and it has to have the best people,” Lyons concluded.