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January 31, 2024   China Daily  

Time-honored Peanut Industry Blossoms with New Growth in Shandong

Case Study;Value Chain Development for Smallholders; Peanut Plantation and Production;Rural Development; Shandong;Peanut

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With its long-time edge in peanut plantation and production, a small township in Shandong province is pushing forward rural revitalization and generating new growth through an increasingly updated and complete industrial chain.

In the agricultural heartland of Qishan township of Shandong province, Houtuan village boasts a rich history in peanut cultivation and farming expertise. Blessed with fertile soil, pristine water quality, and ample sunlight, the village gets to leverage its natural advantages for peanut cultivation. To maximize this potential, the village has ramped up efforts to select superior seed varieties and expand the cultivation scale.

Houtuan village has successfully introduced and tested 45 different peanut varieties so far, establishing a 40-mu (2.67-hectare) high oleic peanut experimental base. Last year, the village achieved an impressive yield of approximately 400 kilograms per mu of high oleic peanuts, contributing to a substantial income of nearly 2 million yuan ($28 million) in the peanut industry.

The promotion of new high-oleic peanut varieties in Houtuan has also catalyzed the creation of over 200 mu of integrated demonstration fields in seven surrounding villages, radiating out to encompass more than 6,000 mu of high-acid peanut fields throughout the entire township. In recognition of its achievements, the project was honored with the first prize for technological achievement by the Shandong Academy of Agricultural Sciences in 2023.

The role of cutting-edge technology in industry development and talent cultivation has also been attached with significant importance in Qishan. On the one hand, collaborating with about 100 peanut specialists from the SAAS, the township employs intelligent application platforms and expert service teams to guide and assist farmers, benefiting over 1,000 households and bridging the "final gap" in its agricultural technology dissemination.

On the other hand, Qishan has never ceased its pace to invest in nurturing local talent for the peanut industry. Operating on the principle of "personalized teaching in accordance with demand," the town often invites experts from peanut research institutes to conduct on-site classes, fostering more than 300 local experts.

Aiming to gradually form a completed industry chain, Qishan strives to achieve an integration encompassing "breeding + order-based sales + deep processing," crafting a blueprint for its future peanut industry.

At the breeding stage, the town promotes industrial development through research projects. In the supply and sales phase, it supports family farms and smallholders with order-based sales, aiming to purchase 500 metric tons of high oleic peanuts with an estimated sales revenue of 4.5 million yuan in 2024. At the processing stage, technological upgrades are expected to enhance efficiency, with the adoption of low-temperature cold pressing increasing peanut oil yield by 5 percent.

In August, Qishan's local oil mill collaborated with the SAAS to jointly create a brand of environmentally friendly high oleic peanut oil. In this regard, the town's total output value of the peanut industry is projected to exceed 29 million yuan this year.

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Time-honored Peanut Industry Blossoms with New Growth in Shandong

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Time-honored Peanut Industry Blossoms with New Growth in Shandong

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