Source; Author of China Newsweek: Yu YuanThe early winter is supposed to be a good time for vegetables to be in short supply and the purchase and sale of vegetables are booming. However, vegetables in many places in China are facing problems of unsalable sales, even if the price drops to a few cents, it is difficult to get out of the fields.
In Pingdingshan, Henan, more than 100000 tons of radish and scallions are unsalable, and in Zhoukou, 147000 tons of celery, baby cabbage and other vegetables are unsalable. According to incomplete statistics, 300,000 tons of vegetables are unsalable in Henan Province.
The problem of unsalable sales is not limited to Henan. Previously, a video of vegetable farmers in Caoxian County, Shandong Province, who had to destroy vegetables in the field to avoid delaying winter planting due to their unsalable vegetables also attracted a lot of attention. At the same time, Hebei and other places also have problems selling vegetables.
The supply and marketing of vegetables are connected with the demand, the "one vegetable, one meal" of many residents, the supply and the income of too many vegetable farmers. Vegetables are difficult to sell. What's the difficulty?。
UnstableXiayi County, Shangqiu, Henan Province, is a key county for vegetable production and a high-quality vegetable production base in China. The annual vegetable planting area is 350000 mu. Now it is the time for local high-quality celery to go on the market.
Lao Wei (not his real name) is a well-known local farmer, who contracted nearly 30 mu of celery this year. He told China Newsweek that local vegetable planting has a history of more than 40 years, especially celery. "Our celery tastes good, has bright colors, and is rich in trace elements selenium and strontium. It has sold well before, but this year it won't sell."
According to Lao Wei's estimation, including himself, the planting area of celery in the county is more than 10000 mu, and nearly 100 million jin of celery is seriously unsalable.
Farmers are usually only responsible for planting but not selling, so there are not many ways to deal with unsalable sales, and they can only sell at reduced prices. At present, Lao Wei has reduced the price of celery to 5 cents a catty.
You know, when the market was good last year, Lao Wei's celery was sold for a maximum of 2 yuan per kilogram. In other words, this year's price was equivalent to 1/40 of last year's price.
Is that a loss? When asked, Lao Wei said helplessly, "Can we not compensate?" He calculated such an account with China Newsweek: at 5 cents per kilogram, the income of one mu of land is only more than 500 yuan, but the cost is 2500 yuan, which is equivalent to a loss of 2000 yuan per mu of land. "But you have to sell it even if you lose money. That's the case with green leafy vegetables. If you sell them one minute late, you will lose more."
Henan is the second largest vegetable production province in China. According to the data of the National Bureau of Statistics, the vegetable output will reach 76071500 tons in 2021, accounting for 9.8% of the country's total. The vegetable export chain will radiate to neighboring Hubei, Anhui, Zhejiang, Jiangsu and other places.
At present, the situation of Xiayi is being staged in many places in Henan. It is reported that 50 major planting counties in Henan Province have unsalable vegetables to varying degrees. The vegetable planting area in Zhifang Town, Ruzhou is more than 20000 mu. A variety of vegetables, such as 3.5 million kg spring onions, 930000 kg spinach, and 191230000 kg cabbage, are unsalable. The local government can only digest 10% of the vegetable output, and the remaining 90% of the vegetables are usually sent to other regions in and outside the province. However, a large number of vegetables are currently stuck in the field.
According to a data provided by the China Association of Agricultural Products Circulation Brokers to China Newsweek, as of November 19, there were about 300000 tons of vegetables unsalable in Henan Province (incomplete statistics). There are 112000 tons of Chinese cabbage, radish, green onion, garlic sprouts, coriander and other unsalable areas such as Ruzhou, Yexian and Jiaxian in Pingdingshan; In Zhoukou, Fugou, Xihua, Luyi, Dancheng and Huaiyang, there are 147000 tons of celery, baby vegetables, green onions, and organic cauliflower that are unsalable.
Coincidentally, parts of North China are also suffering from vegetable unsalable difficulties.
Recently, the video of a farmer in Caoxian County, Shandong Province who encountered "celery is difficult to sell" has aroused the attention and resonance of netizens on the Internet. In the video, the farmers looked down at the plowed land and calculated that nearly 100000 jin of vegetables were destroyed in this way. It was painful and sad to watch. The vegetable farmer said in the video: "Because the vegetables can't be sold, they are planted in large areas, and there are no merchants to collect them, we have taken a helpless approach and directly destroyed them."
Aunt Wang of Baita Village, Xindu District, Xingtai, Hebei Province, has harvested 200000 jin of turnips this year, but she is worried about the unexpected harvest. She told China Newsweek that in previous years, customers came to collect the goods, but this year, customers could not come in. Even if some customers want to collect turnips, they are locked at home because of the epidemic, and can't go out, so they have to go to the field to get them.
PainObjectively speaking, in recent years, the epidemic situation has been repeated in many places, and some government canteens and catering enterprises have suspended on-site food and even take out, leading to a significant decline in vegetable group purchase.
According to the data of the National Bureau of Statistics, the total retail sales of consumer goods in October was 4027.1 billion yuan, down 0.5% year on year and 0.68% month on month. After excluding automobile consumption, the total retail sales of consumer goods fell 0.9%. The catering revenue was 409.9 billion yuan, down 8.1%.
However, unlike previous years, the more important reason for the sluggish demand this year is the "traffic jam" caused by epidemic prevention.
Taking Cao County farmers in Shandong Province as an example, it is reported by relevant media that vehicles from other places entering Cao County to pull vegetables should be reported three days in advance; However, trucks from Zhengzhou and the five northwest provinces are not allowed to enter Caoxian even if they are reported in advance; As for local trucks pulling vegetables, even if they do not pass the epidemic risk area, they will be isolated at home for a week after returning home.
In addition, a boss in Henan told on the Internet that he wanted to go to eight unsalable places to get food. "The day before yesterday, he called every highway intersection to confirm that if there was a need for a certificate in the village, if there was a need for a certificate in the village and in the town at the same time, if there was a need for a certificate in the village and in the town, he would not let go."
"In this case, even if you want to help, you can't help." Liu Jiaming (not his real name), who is engaged in vegetable wholesale business in Beijing, told China Newsweek that he has a vegetable base in Nanyang, Henan Province, and the local cabbage, baby cabbage, cabbage and broccoli are facing serious unsalable market.
"In fact, there is also a demand here in Beijing. Yesterday, Wumart Supermarket informed me that 20000 bags, or 60000 pieces, of baby vegetables need to be delivered, which is equivalent to the output of several mu of land. I also contacted the local baby vegetable growers in Nanyang, but was told that they could not enter."
However, fundamentally speaking, the unsalable vegetable is essentially the imbalance between market supply and demand, resulting in the contradiction between production and sales.
From the supply side, this year's vegetable output is indeed more than last year's. According to the data of China Commercial Industry Research Institute, the vegetable planting area in China will be 2187221 thousand hectares in 2021, and the vegetable output will be 767 million tons. It is estimated that the vegetable planting area will increase to 2235635 thousand hectares in 2022, and the vegetable output will increase to 791 million tons.
Vegetable prices can also, to some extent, reflect the current situation of oversupply of vegetables this year. On November 23, the weighted average price of vegetables in Xinfadi Market was 3.19 yuan/kg, and 3.76 yuan/kg in the same period of 2021. The price of vegetables dropped significantly. According to the statistics of 25 common vegetables in Xinfadi market, only the prices of potatoes, yams, sweet potatoes and ginger are higher than the same period in 2021, while the prices of the other 21 vegetables are lower than the same period in 2021.
The relevant person in charge of Beijing Xinfadi Market said that the vegetable supply was more this year, on the one hand, because the vegetables were generally expanded this autumn. Due to the overall high price of vegetables in the autumn of 2021, the structural adjustment of vegetables in the autumn of this year was too large, making the vegetable planting area more than the same period last year.
But in fact, the high price of vegetables last year was not caused by insufficient planting area, but because the adverse weather affected the output. "Last year, there was too much rain at the initial stage of vegetable planting, and some vegetables were delayed in planting and marketing. During the growing period, there was flooding, which caused a gap in the vegetable supply chain in summer and autumn."
Secondly, the weather conditions of vegetables in the growing period in autumn this year are basically normal, and the temperature in autumn is higher than that in the same period of the year, which is more conducive to the growth of vegetables, making the yield per unit area and total output of vegetables in autumn this year significantly higher than that in the same period of last year, forming a situation of phased oversupply, leading to the difficulty in selling vegetables in some regions.
UnplugLin Guofa, research director of Brick Agricultural Big Data Group, told China Newsweek that the unsalable vegetables will inevitably affect farmers' income, and in the long run will hurt farmers' enthusiasm for growing vegetables, which is not conducive to stabilizing the supply of agricultural products. In addition, there is no waiting time for farmers. If the problem of unsalable market is not solved as soon as possible, it will also affect the planting of other crops such as wheat in the later period.
In his view, the top priority is to grasp the connection between production and marketing and get through the logistics congestion. "The government departments should do everything possible to take measures to help vegetable farmers find market outlets, expand the sales radius, and solve the urgent problem of unsalable sales."
In fact, since the end of April this year, smooth logistics has been mentioned many times at the regular meeting of the State Council. The State Council Meeting held on November 22 once again made it clear that the working mechanism for ensuring the smooth flow of logistics should be continuously coordinated to ensure the smooth flow of main roads and micro circulation, ensure the normal operation of port, station and other transportation, timely break through the blocking points, and maintain the stability of the industrial chain supply chain and the smooth flow of imports and exports.
At present, many places have started to adjust epidemic prevention measures to smooth the logistics cycle.
Taking Henan as an example, on November 18, Henan Province held a teleconference on vegetable promotion in key cities and counties of the province, requiring optimization of epidemic prevention measures and strict implementation of the green channel policy for fresh agricultural products; On the 19th, Henan Province introduced 10 vegetable promotion measures to help farmers sell vegetables; On the 22nd, Henan issued seven more measures to ensure the smooth logistics of the "main artery". It is strictly forbidden to block the roads without authorization, so as to ensure that the roads to vegetable bases, agricultural wholesale markets and other places are smooth.
In Shandong, the relevant person in charge of the Agricultural and Rural Bureau of Caoxian County also responded that after understanding the unsalable phenomenon of local celery, they have contacted a large number of local supermarkets to connect with farmers and help farmers sell vegetables on a time difference basis. At the same time, the person in charge of Hanji Town in Caoxian County responded that the rectification had been carried out according to the latest prevention and control measures, and the trucks without epidemic risk were not isolated.
At the national level, on November 21, in response to the call of the All China Federation of Supply and Marketing Cooperatives, the China Association of Agricultural Products Circulation Brokers issued a proposal to help Henan Province sell unsalable vegetables, and called on all member enterprises and branches to give play to their resource advantages and bring goods through the organization of e-commerce platforms and live broadcast; Internal canteens and supermarkets sign direct supply and direct sales contracts to help broaden the vegetable sales channels in Henan. As of 12:00 noon on November 25, 1617.4 tons of Henan vegetables had been sold, totaling 3113331 yuan. There is a purchase intention of about 1800 tons, 4.82 million yuan.
Jiang Wenlai, a researcher at the Institute of Agricultural Resources and Agricultural Zoning of the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, said that in the next step, in the process of epidemic prevention and control, all regions should not only do a good job of epidemic prevention and control, but also pay attention to the smooth sale of agricultural products, farmers' income and other livelihood issues. In particular, fresh agricultural products such as vegetables have a short fresh-keeping period, and smooth transportation is directly related to whether farmers' interests can be guaranteed. Special priority channels for the transportation of fresh agricultural products such as vegetables should be opened to facilitate the sale of fresh agricultural and sideline products.
In fact, the unsalable phenomenon of agricultural products such as fruits and vegetables almost occurs every year. Unlike rice, corn, wheat and other staple grains, these economic crops that are not strategic guarantee materials are obviously affected by market supply and demand. How to give full play to the effectiveness of market allocation and make good use of government regulation is a problem that must be directly faced by China's agricultural upgrading.
Li Guoxiang, a researcher of the Rural Development Research Institute of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, pointed out to China Newsweek that in the long run and fundamentally, we should change the production and marketing structure and solve the problem of farmers' difficulty in obtaining effective information. "We should further introduce policies to guide leading enterprises to form closer ties and cooperative relations with farmers, encourage the development of farmers' cooperatives, and promote farmers' market-oriented production."
Lei Bin, vice president and secretary-general of China Association of Agricultural Products Circulation Brokers, also told China Newsweek that to improve farmers' ability to withstand market price risks and enhance the stability of the industrial chain, we can also focus on improving the ability of intensive processing of agricultural products.。 "The development of intensive processing of agricultural products can effectively enhance the added value of agricultural raw materials and enable farmers to more share the benefits brought by the value-added of the whole industrial chain, which is also an important supporting force to promote the structural reform of the agricultural supply side and accelerate the modernization of agriculture and rural areas.".