Ningxiang figs appear at Italy's biggest fruit and vegetable trade fair
"We specially brought new dried figs with a new baking process, which are healthier and tastier," said Huo Wen, general manager of Changsha Shuibao Agricultural Technology Co., Ltd. present at Macfruit when giving an interview on the phone. She noted the figs with unique features won the favor of foreign merchants, and got European orders on the first day.
"At present, the company possesses two fig plantation bases. One of them is in Jietou Village, Hengshi Town, Ningxiang City. It is the biggest in Hunan with 60 permanent workers and more than 100 workers during the peak time of employment, among whom women make up about 80%. And to solve the employment of rural women is my original intention of starting the business."
In order to process fresh figs into dried figs, Huo Wen invested several million yuan in factories and production lines in the base.
"Now the processing area covers 22 mu (about 1.47 hectares), among which, over 2,200 square meters of workshops have been put into use, with 1,500 kilograms dried figs able to be produced a day."
"Our figs sell well. With the picking season coming, more than 500 kilograms of figs can be picked every day. Most of fresh figs are sold online and offline and the rest are processed into dried figs." Huo Wen said.
She added, "Changsha Shuibao Agricultural Technology Co., Ltd. has built up its own platform for e-commerce sales and formed the online and offline combined sales model. Besides, two or three online sales platforms have their men stationed in the base to order and sell figs."
Participating in the exhibition and getting the popularity among European friends added more confidence to Huo Wen to expand the scale and develop the fig industry. "We will expand the planting area to 1,000 mu (about 66.67 hectares) in two or three years and create a modern agricultural industrial park focusing on figs and integrating recreation, sightseeing, and industry-university-research cooperation."
Next, the company will found the China Agricultural University Figs Research Institute to develop fig varieties suitable for planting in the south-central region of China.