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The country's massive demand for milk has led to an increase in imports of dairy cattle from Australia, New Zealand and Uruguay, but that trade is expected to slow in five years, according to a leading expert.
China imported nearly 100,000 cattle from the three countries last year.
The number will keep increasing, said Li Shengli, chief scientist of the National Milk Industry Technology System and a professor at China Agricultural University.
Modern Farming Group Co Ltd, Liaoning Huishan Holdings Group and other top milk producers plan to set up dozens of large farms, he said.
Other large dairy companies have built their own farms to ensure that the quality of the milk supply remains high.
China Mengniu Dairy Co Ltd will invest 3.5 billion yuan ($549.15 million) to set up between eight and 12 dairies by 2015.
Bright Dairy and Food Co Ltd is expected to build a 130-million-yuan farm in Wuhan, Hubei province. And Inner Mongolia Yili Industrial Group Co Ltd last month opened a 220-million-yuan farm that is home to 5,000 dairy cattle.
Nestle (China) Ltd, meanwhile, set up a dairy-farming institute at its Shuangcheng fresh milk supply base in Heilongjiang province early this month. The institute operates three training farms, which work with 10,720 cows.
Not surprisingly, large farms need more cattle than small ones. Since 2009, China has been buying more of the farm animals than any other country in the world.
Last year, 52 percent of the cattle imported by the country came from Australia, 34 percent from New Zealand and 14 percent from Uruguay, according to the General Administration of Customs.