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Temporal Trends in Pollination Deficits and Its Potential Impacts on Chinese Agriculture

Abstract : Worldwide, there is increasing evidence that shows a decline in pollinators, limiting crop pollination and production. However, it is unclear to what extent Chinese agriculture could be impacted by pollinator deficits. Data for 84 major crops in China between 1961 and 2018 were analyzed for the temporal trends in crop area and production, agricultural economic contribution of pollination, crop yield deficits, and honey bee pollination demand. We found a rapid increase in agricultural dependence on insect pollinators: both the cultivated area and total production of pollinator-dependent crops increased faster than those of pollinator-independent crops during 1961–2018. The total economic value of pollination amounted to US$ 106.08 billion in 2010, representing 19.12% of the total production value of Chinese agriculture, approximately twice the 9.5% value estimated for global agriculture. Crops with higher pollinator dependence showed greater mean growth in cultivated area than those with lower dependence, but lower mean growth of crop production and yield. Crop yield growth was also more unstable with increasing pollinator dependence. The minimum pollination demand for honey bee colonies was about three times the stock of honey bee colonies available in 2018. Furthermore, we found a decline in crop yield deficit with the increase in honey bee colony pollination service capacity. We considered that the shortage of pollinators resulted in the yield deficits for pollinator-dependent crops. Future increase in the area of pollinator-dependent crops will increase the need for more pollinators, suggesting the importance of implementing measures to protect pollinators to ensure a better-secured future for agricultural production in China.
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https://hal.inrae.fr/hal-03258529
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Submitted on : Friday, June 11, 2021 - 3:39:03 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, July 21, 2021 - 10:28:05 AM

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Shibonage Mashilingi, Hong Zhang, Wenfeng Chen, Bernard Vaissière, Lucas Garibaldi, et al.. Temporal Trends in Pollination Deficits and Its Potential Impacts on Chinese Agriculture. Journal of Economic Entomology, Entomological Society of America, 2021, pp.1-10. ⟨10.1093/jee/toab100⟩. ⟨hal-03258529⟩

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