The revenue of China's catering industry exceeded 3.9 trillion yuan in 2017, up 10.7 percent compared to 2016, according to the latest statistics from the Chinese Cuisine Association. Chinese-style meals still dominate, accounting for 57 percent of the total.
The report also shows that younger customers are the driving force among food and beverage consumers, accounting for around half of all food and beverage consumption. They are also the most active contributors to takeaway online food market. The average price of each takeaway order on a popular Chinese food ordering app, Ele.me, exceeded 40 yuan last year.
Caviar has a long reputation for its rarity and high value, and is typically produced in Europe and Central Asia. Now sturgeons raised in a local lake by farmers in Chun'an county in Zhejiang province have made the area the largest global supplier of caviar, according to a report in the American news magazine Time.
The company that runs the fish farm, Kaluga Queen, says the 30,000 sturgeons raised in the 573-square-kilometer Thousand Island Lake originated from Russia and Central Asia. The high-quality caviar they produce is served in dozens of Michelin three-starred restaurants in Paris. It also appeared on the dining tables at the 2016 G20 Summit in Hangzhou.
A pack of the most expensive Kaluga Queen branded caviar is priced at about 2,100 US dollars, which is about 60 cents for each egg. About 80 percent of the caviar produced at Thousand Island Lake will be exported to the EU, the US, and the Middle East. And domestic demand for caviar has been increasing amongst wealthy Chinese people.
Foreigners believe Chinese cuisine is the factor that best represents Chinese culture, according to the 2016-2017 China National Image Global Survey released recently.
The survey interviewed citizens in 22 countries, with 500 respondents from each country. Among the 11,000 surveyed, 52 percent picked Chinese cuisine as a representative of Chinese culture, with almost 80 percent saying they had tried it, 72 percent of whom spoke highly of it.