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HZAU’s Deng Xiuxin with Alibaba Aid Peasants Amid Epidemic

Deng Xiuxin, former president of HZAU, the academician of Chinese Academy of Engineering, worked with Alibaba to create a green sales channels for peasants in Zigui county, Hubei.

During the coronavirus outbreak, production places in many areas, especially in Hubei province, have witnessed a lot of unsalable agricultural products and the great loss of local peasants.

The time of the year is harvest season for navel oranges but novel coronavirus outbreak hit the peasants unprepared, which means their investment and efforts over the past year will be to no avail.

“This year, our navel oranges are of great quality and taste particular sweet, which are expected to be snapped up when reaching maturity. However, the traditional offline wholesales channels are not working due to the traffic restrictions amid the epidemic” said the official of the Agricultural and Rural Bureau of Zigui County, Hubei. Besides, some consumers are worried that farm products from Hubei may carry Covid-19, and dared not to buy them.

“Firstly, plants are not the hosts of novel coronavirus; secondly, it is impossible for fruits to carry viruses after long-distance transport since viruses can only live a short period of time after leaving their hosts; thirdly, the epidemic prevention and control measures have been carried out well in China. For instance, only healthy people who are not infected by novel coronavirus can engage in agricultural production. To sum up, Hubei’s agricultural products are safe to eat,” Deng says.

“We always encourage farmers to sell products on e-commerce platform,” said Deng, “especially Citrus fruits, which have thicker peels, relatively easier to transport and keep fresh.” He also created a bridge between local farmers and Alibaba, a Chinese multinational technology company specializing in e-commerce. On Mar. 2, Alibaba worked with Zigui County People’s Government to help peasants sell their navel oranges online.

Moreover, Alibaba, together with 30 Chinese agricultural scientists, works out a plan to help farmers. Those experts inform Alibaba of overstocking and sluggish sales of goods, and then Alibaba raises a fund of RMB one billion to make safe agricultural products available online and offline through quality control and online sales. As of February 27, this scheme has benefited Hainan, Shandong and another 18 provinces, and 1396 undesirable commodities which are 58,000 tons in weight have been sold in Taobao and Tmall, two subsidiaries of Alibaba Group.  


Translated by: Yang Ting & Guo Yating

Supervised by: Jin Bei


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