Yunnan has become China’s largest coffee producing area, whose output accounts for almost entire national output, xinhuanet.com reported.
Statistics from the Yunnan Provincial Agriculture Department show that the coffee planting area in the Southwest China’s province has covered about 125,000 hectares and that the output has exceeded 118,000 tons.
Depending on fluctuations in global coffee production and marketing, it is estimated that Yunnan’s coffee planting area may expand to more than 167,000 hectares by 2020. The total value of output will have exceeded 35 billion yuan ($5.6 billion) by that time.
Yunnan has explored its favorable conditions as a coffee-growing region since more than a century. Coffee planted there is unique because it is “strong but not bitter, fragrant but not aggressive and with mild acidity”, explained Wang Pinghua, the vice director of the Agriculture Department.
These features make Yunnan coffee stand out in the global market. In 2014, coffee has become the third largest agricultural export product in Yunnan and generated foreign exchange revenues of $146 million, following vegetables and tobacco.
Yunnan coffee companies are thriving along with the coffee planting industry. Hogood Coffee Co, for example, has become the largest instant coffee producer in China with an annual output of 13,000 tons. The partnership between Starbucks and Yunnan Aini Group established in 2011 also marked a further step for Yunnan coffee to enter international markets.
In particular, Yunnan Changshengda Investment Company based in the Kunming Hi-Tech Zone supports its neighbor Laos to cultivate coffee instead of opium poppies, lifting more than 6,000 peasant households out of poverty and contributing to the stability in borderland.
By Shi Zihan and edited by Mevlut Katik