Fighting Poverty: Vegetable growing on the roof of the World
Tashkent, Uzbekistan (UzDaily.com) -- In 2020, China intends to completely eliminate poverty and achieve a moderately prosperous society, work in this direction is underway in all regions of the country. So, in Tibet Autonomous Region, the rapid development of vegetable production began.
20 years ago, vegetables were a real rarity for Tibetans. Then in Tibet only radish, potatoes and some others were grown, usually, returning from other regions of the country, Tibetans usually brought vegetables home. For Tibet at that time, vegetables were more valuable than meat.
And today, thanks to active efforts in the Tibet Autonomous Region, vegetable growing is developing.
In 1998, cadres from Jinan City, Shandong Province were sent to Pelam County, Shigatse City to provide development assistance. They offered the county population the advanced vegetable-growing technologies common in Shandong province, these technologies were designed for the highlands.
Recalling the first experience of working in Tibet, Zhang Jimin, an agricultural technician of the older generation, said that at first everyone in the Shandong group suffered from altitude sickness, there was a language barrier, and most importantly, the local population was distrustful of vegetable growing. In short, Zhang Jimin and his associates faced only difficulties. Despite everything, Zhang Jimin and his colleagues talked patiently with the local population, taught everyone how to grow vegetables, even explained how to weigh and sell.
As the development proceeded, the scale of vegetable growing in Pelam County gradually expanded. Today, the county has become one of the main agricultural centers of Tibet and an exemplary zone for standardized vegetable production at the state level.
In addition to Pelam, vegetable growing also began to actively develop in Ngari, Nagchu and other districts of Tibet. In 2019, the cultivated area for vegetables in Tibet amounted to 26 thousand hectares, and the production volume reached 970 thousand tons. The coefficient of self-sufficiency in vegetables in the autumn-summer season in the main cities and villages of the Tibet Autonomous Region has reached more than 85%, and in the spring-winter period - about 65%.
Currently, the tables of ordinary Tibetans abound in vegetables - there are cucumbers, tomatoes, zucchini, white cabbage and other fresh and inexpensive vegetables.
According to statistics, the average life expectancy in Tibet has exceeded 70.6 years, while earlier this figure was at 35.5 years. In addition to improving health services and improving social welfare systems, the presence of vegetables in the regular diet and a richer diet have played a large role in improving life expectancy.
Thanks to the development of vegetable growing, Pelam County and many other regions of Tibet have overcome poverty and embarked on the path of prosperity. In Pelam County alone, more than 4 thousand people are employed in the cultivation of vegetables, whose income has increased significantly.
Agricultural companies from other regions of the country are also developing their activities here, which has given a new impetus to the development of local vegetable growing. According to the general director of Zhongnong-shengyu agricultural company from Shandong-Meng Dali province, in the highlands, clean air, high-quality soil, good water and few pests - all this ensures the growth of high-quality organic vegetables. The company is currently making efforts to scale up production of high quality agricultural products.