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Business trends

Impossible dumpling: China pork shortage makes way for alternatives

Plant-based burgers, noodles and mooncakes create buzz despite higher cost

A meat seller lifts a pork slice with tongs at a supermarket in Handan, Hebei province. China is stepping up imports of beef, pork and poultry to make up for the decline in its pig herd from a swine fever epidemic.   © Reuters

GUANGZHOU -- China's growing appetite for plant-based meat has spawned dozens of startups cooking up options specifically tailored for Chinese cuisine, with dreams of eventually taking on the U.S. players currently leading the global market.

This comes at a time when China is stepping up imports of beef, pork and poultry to make up for the decline in its pig herd from a swine fever epidemic. The world's most populous nation's buying spree has pushed up prices of various types of meat, creating far-reaching repercussions for the global economy.

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