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Navel orange farmers surprised by Premier’s reply

Updated: Dec 7,2016 11:31 AM Daily

“We got a reply from the Premier!”

Farmers at a navel orange base in Ruijin, Jiangxi province, were happily discussing Premier Li Keqiang’s letter of reply along with 200 yuan.

The story began when Premier Li made an inspection visit on Aug 22, speaking highly of local people’s “internet plus” initiative of quality regulation and online sales.

Premier Li’s praise of the local navel oranges drew the attention of fruit buyers across the nation, and a large amount of orders were placed.

So, in order to report on the development of the local navel orange industry and express thanks, the villagers sent a letter and two boxes of fresh navel oranges to the Premier.

To their surprise, they got the letter of reply and a 200-yuan payment from Premier Li.

In his letter, Premier Li said he is happy to hear about the growing sales of their navel oranges in the domestic market as well as the international market, such as the European Union, with the help of the internet.

He also encouraged the farmers to manage the navel orange industry and integrate agriculture with the development of “internet plus” so that sales will be further promoted and agricultural competitiveness and anti-risk ability will be increased.

At the end of his letter, the Premier sent his sincere wishes for happy lives of the villagers.

Regarded as the “hometown of navel oranges” in China, the southern region of Jiangxi province is famous for its cultivation of the tasty fruit.

Since the late 1980s, local government have been making efforts to foster industrial hubs that include cultivation, storage, logistics, and further processing of navel oranges.

The move created nearly one million jobs for local rural areas and made the navel orange industry the backbone of the local economy.

According to statistics, in 2015, the planting area for navel oranges in southern Jiangxi reached 1.57 million mu (104,667 hectares), with a yield of 1.28 million tons and production value of 65.8 billion yuan ($9.6 billion), making the region the world’s largest for navel oranges.