Or­ganic food emerg­ing as lu­cra­tive in­dus­try

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - HEILONGJIANG SPECIAL - By ZHOU HUIY­ING zhouhuiy­ing@chi­nadaily.com.cn

For the first half year of 2013, the in­dus­trial val­ueadded out­put of food pro­cess­ing ranked sec­ond in Hei­longjiang prov­ince fol­low­ing petroleum and nat­u­ral gas ex­ploita­tion, said Lu Hao, gov­er­nor of Hei­longjiang.

“With a 19.3 per­cent in­crease, the food pro­cess­ing in­dus­try has ex­ceeded the petro­chem­i­cal and equip­ment man­u­fac­tur­ing in­dus­try.”

Lo­cated in the north­east­ern part of China, Hei­longjiang is rich in nat­u­ral re­sources. Re­cent years have seen a pe­riod of rapid de­vel­op­ment in the prov­ince’s or­ganic food in­dus­try.

Rec­og­nized as one of the in­dus­tries with the big­gest po­ten­tial, or­ganic food has been made a pri­or­ity in the pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ment’s agenda.

“The gov­ern­ment in­vests 8 to 10 bil­lion yuan ($1.3 bil­lion to $1.6 bil­lion) in the or­ganic food in­dus­try ev­ery year,” Lu said.

On the open­ing day of Hong Kong & Ma­cao and Tai­wan Com­modi­ties Fair in Shen­zhen on Nov 28, the prov­ince’s top 10 or­ganic food brands at­tracted a lot of at­ten­tion. Among them, a va­ri­ety of rice pro­vided by the East Gra­nary Com­pany was the most pop­u­lar one.

The com­pany has es­tab­lished in­dus­trial zones for rice pro­cess­ing in three of the prov­ince’s high- qual­ity ri­ce­pro­duc­ing ar­eas, in­clud­ing Wuchang, Fangzheng and Zhaoyuan.

With each area’s an­nual pro­cess­ing ca­pac­ity ex­ceed­ing 300,000 tons, the com­pany has be­come the leader of Hei­longjiang’s rice pro­cess­ing in­dus­tries.

In the early morn­ing of the open­ing day, the or­ganic food del­e­ga­tion mem­bers from Hei­longjiang pre­sented the ex­hibitors and visi­tors with some hot and steamy rice cooked in a rice cooker.

“What a won­der­ful smell! I feel re­ally hun­gry now and re­ally want to try some,” said an ex­hibitor from Hong Kong sur­named Chen.

“The rice is like crys­tal. I was shocked by the rice fra­grance. It is in­deed the strong­est rice fra­grance I have ever had,” said Chen.

In ad­di­tion to rice, agar­ics and blue­ber­ries also showed their charm dur­ing the fair.

A Shen­zhen cit­i­zen told China Daily that he just tried the agar­ics from Hei­longjiang, and it tasted com­pletely dif­fer­ent from what he had be­fore.

“Agar­ics from the south are usu­ally crisp, but Hei­longjiang agar­ics tasted fleshy and smooth.” Af­ter tast­ing, he de­cided to buy some for his fam­ily.

As one of the Hei­longjiang spe­cial­ties, blue­berry also at­tracted peo­ple’s at­ten­tion.

“I know that Hei­longjiang blue­berry from the Greater and Lesser Hing­gan Moun­tains is rich in an­tho­cyani­din and has a strong med­i­cal ef­fect,” said Chen Weikai, the vice pres­i­dent of Shen­zhen Yipin Wine Group, “I re­ally ex­pect to dis­trib­ute Hei­longjiang blue­berry wine if there is a chance.”

More than 100 kinds of food were dis­played, in­clud­ing rice, soy­bean, agar­ics and honey.

Most of the visi­tors to the expo shared their con­cern about food safety and in­ter­est in or­ganic food, es­pe­cially those from Hei­longjiang.

ZHOU HUIY­ING / FOR CHINA DAILY

Wine pro­duced by gin­seng and or­ganic plants from the prov­ince.

ZHU DAOYUAN / FOR CHINA DAILY

The globe in front of the li­brary, sig­nal­ing tech­no­log­i­cal achieve­ments of Harbin In­sti­tute of Tech­nol­ogy.

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