Wed, 27 Sep 2023

© Provided by Xinhua

HEFEI, Aug. 19 (Xinhua) -- When winds ripple the lush wheat farm stretching around 300 hectares in northwestern Zimbabwe in August, it is hard to believe that this fertile farmland was barren a decade ago.

The African country had undergone years of economic recession and a sharp decline in grain output back then, with vast farmlands abandoned.

In 2010, east China's Anhui State Farms Group Co., Ltd. and Zimbabwe's Ministry of Defense, jointly set up the Zimbabwe-China Wanjin Agricultural Development Company, aiming to help Zimbabwe reclaim wasteland and develop agriculture.

"We operate three farms, growing corn, soybeans, wheat, potatoes and tobacco. We have produced 150,000 tonnes of grains for Zimbabwe over the past decade, and created 500 jobs for local people. In the harvest season, we hire as many as 2,000 employees," said Yuan Hui, general manager of the company.

With the introduction of agricultural machinery and irrigation facilities, farming on the once weedy land became more and more efficient, Yuan said.

"Large-scale agricultural machinery made the process of land preparation, sowing, fertilization, harvesting and irrigation more efficient, saving both water and labor. The average output of wheat and corn on our farm is twice that planted by local farmers," said Yuan.

China is a reliable cooperative partner of the United Nations and developing countries in the field of food security, said Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi at the Group of 20 foreign ministers' meeting last month.

China has established agricultural cooperation zones with some developing countries, and conducted agricultural science and technology exchanges with over 140 countries and regions, according to Wang.

Since the beginning of this year, China has provided more than 15,000 tonnes of emergency humanitarian food aid to developing countries in need, and will continue to make new efforts to promote food security, Wang added.

Besides providing food aid and promoting agricultural technology, China is also speeding up the promotion of high-quality seeds in developing countries, enriching people's dining tables and bringing higher income for local farmers.

In Central America, vegetable and fruit seeds developed by Anhui Jianghuai Horticulture Seed Co., Ltd. have taken root in Costa Rica.

In the late 1990s, the melon industry in Costa Rica experienced productivity losses because of variety degradation.

In 2012, Jianghuai Horticulture cooperated with Costa Rica to cultivate two disease-resistant melon varieties with 20 to 30 percent higher output per mu (0.067 hectares) compared with local varieties.

"As melon seeds gained popularity in Costa Rica, we continued to promote many other seeds including chili, pumpkin and cucumber seeds to Costa Rica," said Ren Xiang, sales manager of the Costa Rican branch of Jianghuai Horticulture, adding that local farmers exported these agriproducts to Europe and North America, bringing them respectable incomes.

To better develop high-quality seeds, Jianghuai Horticulture has established several seed research and development bases in Costa Rica. Last year, the company worked with local partners to establish a Belt and Road lab for the development of fruit and vegetable seeds as well as intelligent agricultural technology.

Over the past four decades, China's hybrid rice has been grown in dozens of countries and regions. With an annual growing area of 8 million hectares, such cooperation has greatly improved food security in these countries.

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