BEIJING, CHINA — A Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson said on Feb. 15 that the winter drought in the nation’s wheat growing areas will not impact global food prices, because China has enough reserves, according to news reports.

Ministry Spokesman Ma Zhaoxu was quoted as saying the situation “will not affect international food prices,” and that the nation has abundant grain reserves to meet domestic demand.

"The recent drought may have some impact on winter wheat production but the authorities are taking active measures to minimize the impact," Ma said.

Official Chinese figures say the drought has so far affected more than 19 million acres of winter wheat in provinces that account for 42.4% of the total output in those regions.