Monday, November 28, 2011

Patriotic Cabbage Campaign

The Ministry of Agriculture has issued an emergency notice on addressing the problem of unsellable napa cabbages. The program launches a "patriotic cabbage campaign" that involves twisting arms to make sure surplus cabbages get sold.

This follows the successful "patriotic potato campaign" held in mid-October. Around the time of the National Day holiday (Oct. 1) there was a large volume of potatoes with no buyers in Inner Mongolia, Gansu, and Shaanxi Province. In order to reduce farmers' losses, the Ministries of Agriculture and Commerce called on city people in Beijing, Tianjin, Guangzhou, Nanjing and other big cities to buy potatoes from Inner Mongolia. "Some people began calling this the 'patriotic potato campaign.'"

Following this great success, on November 24 the Ministry of Agriculture issued the new notice calling for measures to help farmers in Shandong and Hebei Provinces sell their unsold cabbages.

The notice calls for each province's agriculture, commerce, development and reform and finance departments to designate potatoes and cabbage as commodities to be held in government reserves and to establish a winter-spring vegetable reserve as soon as possible. Officials are also to encourage "dragon head enterprises" to buy up cabbages, participate in the farmer-direct supermarket purchase program, give government aid for stores selling cabbage at low prices, reduce entry fees, stall rents and warehouse rents in wholesale markets for vendors who sell cabbages, and encourage trading companies to buy up cabbages in producing areas.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture, wholesale markets in northern China are expected to sell 32 million jin of cabbages during the second half of November, up 90% from the first half of the month. This is as a result of the patriotic cabbage campaign.

No comments: