Setting A Full Table

A new book tells how China's farmers vanquished famine

Only a decade ago food was so scarce that the threat of starvation was an everyday fact of life for tens of millions of Chinese. Today shop windows are filled with chickens and ducks, and open-air markets are overflowing with fresh vegetables. But if even the casual visitor to China in recent years could see that agricultural sufficiency had come at last to a country historically plagued by famine, few Westerners truly appreciate the magnitude of that achievement or understand how it came about. Under Deng Xiaoping's regime, the Chinese have become the most efficient farmers in the world in terms...

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