Chinese imports of Brazilian soy were linked to the deforestation of 223,000 hectares between 2013 and 2017, according to new research of production chains by monitoring project Trase. The extent of deforestation is equivalent to an area two times the size of New York City.
Of all importers, China is the most exposed to Brazilian soy linked to deforestation because it buys more than anyone else, said Trase. Between 2013 and 2017, China acquired 42 percent of Brazil’s exported soy, triple the quantity purchased by the EU, the country’s second-largest importer.
Yet, despite the risks associated with its large trade volume, China purchases proportionally less soy from places with higher rates of deforestation than the EU. China brings in most of its soy from southern Brazil, while European purchases are concentrated in areas further north.