Focus turns to oil crops

BEIJING: China’s top agricultural official has urged local authorities to strengthen grainfield management and shore up planting areas of major oil crops in the runup to the annual springtime planting season, which starts between February and May nationally from south to north.
Tang Renjian, director of the Central Rural Work Leading Group Office, said on Monday that the interventions were aimed at raising food productivity and securing a bumper harvest of crops including wheat, soybean and rapeseed in the summer.
Speaking at a teleconference on bolstering preparedness for spring plowing, Tang, also minister of agriculture and rural affairs, urged his subordinates to attach utmost importance to this year’s food production.
He said increased food yield is crucial to stabilizing food prices and bolstering confidence in China’s economic recovery.
“ (Officials must) consciously shoulder the political duty to safeguard national food security and make solid efforts in all aspects of food production,” he told agricultural officials from areas including Heilongjiang and Hunan provinces, the country’s major grain-growing areas.
Tang noted that the production of the crops to be harvested in summer is generally faring well, though challenges have emerged such as rising production costs due to hefty fertilizer prices.
He said interventions including more vigorous irrigation and pesticide-spraying efforts are needed for wheat and rapeseed, whose seedlings are undergoing a key transition period and had been affected by adverse factors such as colder-than-usual temperatures and inadequate rainfall.
–The Daily Mail-China Daily news exchange item