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China Daily: Guizhou Growers Boost Cultivation, Processing, Sales


The subtropical climate, clean air and fertile soil make Liupanshui, a city in mountainous Guizhou province, ideal for cultivating tasty, high-quality kiwifruit, growers said.

Fourteen wild varieties are grown in Liupanshui, and the city is regarded as the home of wild kiwis, according to the China Wild Plant Conservation Association. The city has three cold-chain logistics centers, with each center able to handle more than 1,000 metric tons of goods annually, local government officials said.

Liupanshui also has an extensive processing center that is able to handle more than 10,000 tons of the fruit. It produces products such as kiwi wines, juices, jams, preserved fruits and snacks. The local kiwi industrial chain also includes isolating or purifying beneficial elements of the fruit and making some 2,000 tons of beauty products annually using kiwis.

Kiwis originated in China, which have a history of some 1,300 years of cultivation. The nation produces more of the fruit than any other. Kiwis were introduced to New Zealand in the early 20th century, according to Shenzhen-based Qianzhan Industry Research Institute.

In 2021, the production of kiwis in Liupanshui reached 30,500 tons, up 22 percent year-on-year. The value of the city's kiwi crop was 900 million yuan ($141.3 million), up 29 percent over the previous year. By 2024, Liupanshui aims to reach an annual output value of 4.5 billion yuan, the local government said.

The city has a large concentration of poor families, and planting kiwis has become a major industry that helps farmers improve their situation. Nearly 150,000 farmers, including 23,000 farmers in unfavorable economic circumstances, have been involved in planting kiwis and become better off, the local government said.

Liupanshui also plans to work more closely with Wuhan Botanical Garden of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Guizhou University in the research and development of kiwi varieties and building intelligent cultivation greenhouses. The city will also introduce more agricultural machines suitable for cultivation in mountainous areas.

Liupanshui Agriculture Investment and Development Co Ltd, a major local kiwi grower, has seen booming sales in domestic and overseas markets in the past few years. In 2016, the company began exporting kiwis to Southeast Asian countries such as Thailand, as well as to Russia, the United States, Canada and Middle Eastern nations.

"We have also strengthened sales via e-commerce platforms such as JD and Tmall," said Long Weijie, president of Liupanshui Agriculture Investment and Development Co Ltd.

"The rapid growth of the local kiwi industry plays an important role in promoting agricultural modernization, poverty alleviation and the eco-friendly industrial development of Liupanshui," Long said.

Last year, kiwis planted by the grower exceeded 10,000 tons, worth 200 million yuan. By importing smart processing facilities from New Zealand, the company can select and pack 250 tons of kiwis a day, and its cold storage facility can help extend the fruit's viability in storage in order to provide kiwis to the market for 10 months a year.

In 2021, sales revenue of Liupanshui Agriculture Investment and Development Co Ltd was 39.41 million yuan. Sales of kiwi juice reached 3.01 million yuan, and kiwi wine came in at 1.38 million yuan, the company said.

"Besides setting up stores at different wholesale markets in Liupanshui, we have agreements with more than 120 fruit stores in Guiyang," Long said, referring to the provincial capital of Guizhou province.

"Nationwide, we work with several major distributors in different regions and focus on some key sales channels. Those key channels include Disneyland in Shanghai; China Resources (Holdings) Co Ltd in Guangzhou, Guangdong province; and Freshippo, the grocery chain of Alibaba Group," he said.(From China Daily)

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