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China imports first dried chili peppers from Africa

Xinhua | Updated: 2021-08-05 10:24
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Steamed fish head with diced red peppers [Photo provided to China Daily]

CHANGSHA - China has imported its first dried chili peppers from Africa, with 200 kg of these products shipped from Rwanda to the central Chinese city of Changsha, local customs said Wednesday.

On Wednesday, customs authorities in Changsha, capital of Hunan Province, issued an inspection and quarantine certificate for the batch of imports.

"The imported 200 kg of dried chilies will be sold to dealers and then given to customers and food processing plants as samples," said Yu Jian, chairman of GK International in Hunan, the importer.

According to the contract, the supplier in Rwanda will export 50,000 tonnes of dried chili peppers to Hunan Province within five years, and the trade can be settled in the Chinese currency, renminbi, Yu said.

China has the world's largest number of dried chili pepper consumers, exporting 119,900 tonnes of dried chili peppers in the first half of 2021. It is up by 45.55 percent year on year, official data showed. Hunan is a big consumer and processor of chili peppers across the country.

The pepper plantation in Hunan cannot meet the local demand from the dried chili pepper processing industry, said Li Wenxiang, an official with the Hunan provincial department of agriculture and rural affairs.

Before imports from Rwanda, only seven countries were allowed to export dried chili peppers to China.

Last month, the General Administration of Customs gave the green light to dried chili pepper imports from Rwanda. It became the first African country to gain access to the Chinese market for dried chili peppers.

It will give Rwanda opportunities to get a foothold in a lucrative market, and give farmers a sustainable and reliable market for their chili, said Dieudonne Twahirwa with the Rwanda supplier via video link Wednesday.

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