China: Hainan to focus on high-value crops
The Hainan Government held a symposium on June 22-25 where it announced various plans focused on developing 12 new industries, including tropical produce and e-commerce.
Officials also disclosed plans to phase out agricultural industries with low per-hectare returns.
Hainan is located off the southeastern coast of China, about 200 kilometers (125 miles) away from Vietnam.
A release from the event indicated that as part of the five-year plan, the Hainan provincial government planned to establish a national winter season vegetable base, a breeding center, a tropical fruits and crops center and a maritime fishery base.
As part of the reconstruction efforts, a percentage of production of sugar cane, paddy rice and other low efficiency crops are due to be curtailed, while boosts will be seen for the production of coffee beans, cashew nuts, tea, oils and other local tropical crops.
More specifically, the government plans to upgrade 191,100 acres of vegetable fields, 16,480 acres each of apples and red pomelos, 8,230 acres of dragon fruit, and 3,300 acres each of rambutans and mangosteens.
According to local media, the government has set out goals for its agricultural restructuring project, which include phasing out all agricultural sectors that produce less than CNY600 (US$97) per mu (0.16 acre) by 2020, and increasing the overall cost-efficiency of farming sectors by 20% through investing in certain sectors with more than CNY5,000 (US$800) per-mu production value.
In addition, the government plans to increase agricultural output to CNY170 billion (US$27.4 billion) by 2020.
One grower on the island, Zhongjian Farm, has already begun production of red pomelos and released a joint report with the Hainan Academy of Agricultural Sciences with plans to have planted 3,520 acres of the citrus fruit by 2020.
Photo: Rambutan, via Wikimedia Creative Commons