Pepino melon planting industry helps villagers get rid of poverty in SW China’s Yunnan – Xinhua

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CHINA-YUNNAN-POVERTY ALLEVIATION-PEPINO MELON-INDUSTRY (CN)

Villager Zhang Jianwei and his mother Huang Lanfang pick pepino melons in Luhua Village of Xijiekou Town, Shilin Yi Autonomous County, southwest China’s Yunnan Province, Nov. 28, 2019. Rows of shrubs bearing pepino melons spread over the stony desert in Luhua Village in southwest China’s Yunnan. It is the outcomes for locals to fight against the harsh environment and a success to lead a better life. On this stony desert in Luhua Village, it was hard to grow crops in the past. Locals chose to plant the pepino melon which is suitable for the land here and wished to have a good sale. But the pepino melon originated from South America was unknown to most of the Chinese customers. No one bought the fruit after the harvest. Good news came and the situation has changed since the end of 2015. Promotions, part of the poverty alleviation campaign, were rolled out to help raise the popularity and sales of the fruit. This fruit, with a mixed flavor of honeydew and cucumber, is rich in nutrition. And it is recognized gradually by the Chinese who pay attention to their diet. Up to date, pepino melon planting area in Xijiekou Town has reached to 4800 hectares, with more than 4,000 families involved in this industry. The pepino melon planting industry has helped Zhang’s family and his fellow villagers get rid of poverty. The income of Zhang’s family in 2019 is expected to reach 100,000 yuan (about 14215 dollars). (Xinhua/Li Ming)

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