Chongqing's Youyang cultivates thriving oil-tea camellia industry to boost rural revitalization

(People's Daily Online) 09:18, November 23, 2023

Located in the Wuling mountainous area, Youyang Tujia and Miao Autonomous County in southwest China's Chongqing Municipality has cultivated a prosperous oil-tea camellia industry to advance rural revitalization.

Youzhou Camellia Technology Co. Ltd. is a leading state-owned company in the industry in the county. Since its establishment, the company has hired over 10 renowned experts to serve as its technical advisers, and strived to cultivate seedlings of improved oil-tea camellia varieties with technical support from the Chinese Academy of Forestry, the China National Center for Oil-Tea Science, and the Chongqing Academy of Forestry.

Photo shows a nursery base for oil-tea camellia seedlings in Youyang Tujia and Miao Autonomous County, southwest China's Chongqing Municipality. (Chinanews.com/Li Xue)

Youyang has built oil-tea camellia bases spanning 383,000 mu (25,533 hectares), accounting for 30 percent of the total oil-tea camellia planting area in Chongqing. The nursery bases for oil-tea camellia seedlings in the county produce over 20 million qualified oil-tea camellia seedlings per year.

The county is accelerating the building of a complete oil-tea camellia industrial chain with output worth 10 billion yuan ($1.4 billion), and striving to blaze a new path towards prosperity and modernization in a mountainous area, according to Yang Tongsheng, head of the county.

Youzhou Camellia Technology Co. Ltd. built a 1,000-tonne intelligent production line in 2020. The company has rolled out over 30 oil-tea products under seven categories. In collaboration with universities and research institutions, the company has obtained 31 patents.

Youyang's tea oil is mainly sold to downtown Chongqing and other cities like Chengdu, Xi'an, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Beijing, with sales worth over 100 million yuan.

The county has adopted a development model that features cooperation among companies, village collective economic organizations and farmers, which has effectively turned resources into assets, capital into equity, and villagers into shareholders.

A worker at a workshop of Youzhou Camellia Technology Co. Ltd., a leading state-owned company in the oil-tea camellia industry in Youyang Tujia and Miao Autonomous County, southwest China's Chongqing Municipality. (Chinanews.com/Li Xue)

Gutian village in the county’s Youchou township is one of the earliest village collectives to contribute land-use rights to an oil-tea company as equity.

"Villagers become shareholders of the oil-tea company by contributing land-use rights of abandoned land, sparse woodlands and shrub land, and hold a 32 percent equity in the company. They are highly motivated," said Tian Zonglan, Party branch secretary of the village. Tian added that villagers receive dividends and some work at the company, which has increased their incomes.

According to Youyang's development plan for the oil-tea camellia industry, the planting area is expected to hit 500,000 mu by 2025, with oil-tea camellia trees on 200,000 mu of land bearing fruit. By then, the county's fresh oil-tea camellia fruit production will reach 80 million kilograms, generating output worth 320 million yuan, and the comprehensive output value of the entire oil-tea camellia industrial chain will hit 2 billion yuan.

By 2030, the county will build an oil-tea camellia industrial chain integrating base construction, scientific and technological innovation, processing and marketing, brand building, ecological leisure tourism, and health, with annual comprehensive output value hitting 10 billion yuan.

(Web editor: Hongyu, Liang Jun)


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