From the article:
China produces 31 percent of the world’s rice and 20 percent of its corn, U.S. Department of Agriculture data show. …[China] uses 7 percent of the world’s arable land to feed a quarter of its population.
China has only 7% of the world’s farmland yet feeds more than 1.3 billion people (and still growing). No wonder they’re investing so heavily in crop/plant science.
Another one I recently read (if it was you, sorry for not attributing it properly, the comparison just stuck in my head) was that India and Argentina are about the same size (India is about a quarter bigger) yet India must feed 30 times as many people!*
*Of course this isn’t quite a fair comparison since Argentina exports so much food to Western Europe, since those countries can afford to buy food abroad instead of focusing on increasing local production, and China and India must