For the Love of Chinese Bread


Economic analysis of a local, family-run bread bakery is the topic of the latest dispatch from Yoram Bauman, our temporary economist-in-residence in China. Using his improving (but still a bit limited) language skills and a visit A local, family-run bread-only bakery in China. to the local Wu-Mart, he estimates the small shop’s production, profit and costs. Bauman notes that the bread-making family works nearly every day of the month, which is typical, he says, of most workers in the market by his apartment. He’s seen the same workers at the place he buys breakfast everyday – for four months. Mr. and Mrs. Yang, managers of his favorite restaurant, work 12-hour days, seven days a week. They’ll get a break when their first child is born this month.

What would you expect a worker at a bakery to make, pulling eight-plus hours a day, seven days a week? Guess, and then watch this analysis.

This entry is cross-posted on the Rundown– NewsHour’s blog of news and insight. Follow Paul on Twitter.