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Thriving Plum Industry in Fujian Brings Wealth to Growers

source: People's Daily Online 2023-12-22 17:11
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Situated in the mountainous region of southeast China's Fujian Province, Yongtai county is known for its sandy soil, which provides an ideal environment for the cultivation of plums. In 2007, the Yongtai dried plum was granted the status of a national geographical indication product.


"Currently, plum trees available for picking are planted on around 70,000 mu (4,666.67 hectares) of land in the county, generating an annual output of around 70,000 tonnes," said Lin Jingqiang, Yongtai county’s deputy director of the bureau of agriculture and rural affairs.


Yongtai plums are beautifully shaped and delicious, highly favored by the market. (Photo courtesy of the Publicity Department of the Communist Party of China Yongtai County Committee)


However, during a certain period, farmers faced distress as the price of raw plums plummeted.


"The purchase price of plums plummeted to a mere 1.2 yuan per kilogram, resulting in fruit farmers operating at a loss," said Lin Cheng, general manager of Shunda Food Co., Ltd. in Yongtai county.


Despite an abundant harvest, the lack of profitability dampened the farmers' enthusiasm. The low fruit prices severely impacted the competitiveness of the local plum industry, which suffered from a lack of industrial clustering and standardization, Lin Cheng added.


Yongtai county has taken several measures to boost the plum industry. These initiatives include the implementation of industry support policies and the allocation of funds totaling 30.4 million yuan.


Over the past three years, Yongtai county has established 10 demonstration bases for new plum varieties, and implemented nine projects to support dried plum processing. A total of 5,000 mu of standardized plum planting demonstration bases have also been added.


These efforts have effectively enhanced the added value and competitiveness of the plum industry, improved agricultural efficiency, and increased the farmers' incomes, according to Zhang Yanhui, head of the industry section of the rural rejuvenation and development center of Yongtai county.


"Our company purchases around 15,000 tonnes of plums every year and generates an annual output worth over 100 million yuan," said Lin Cheng.


"This has not only increased the income of approximately 5,000 fruit farmers but also created over 500 job opportunities for the local community," Lin Cheng added.


Yongtai county has attracted top plum enterprises from Fujian Province to bolster the plum industry. Furthermore, the county has formed partnerships with well-known companies and engaged university experts to collaborate on the creation of plum beverages and plum-flavored beer.



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