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MARA Published Official Notice on Key Countermeasures to Sustain China’s Crop Production in 2020
Prof. Liu Yonggong
2 March 2020
In compliance with the national No. 1 Document on Agriculture and Rural Development, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs (MARA) promulgated an official notice on key countermeasures to ensure China’s 2020 Crop Production on 6 February 2020.
The document set up three strategic objectives for the year of 2020: (i) ensure the domestic food security and increase the income of farmers; (ii) deepen the structural reform of the agricultural supply side and optimize the cropping structure; (iii) promote green and sustainable crop production and ensure the overall product quality. For achieving these three objectives, the document promulgated five key working areas with 24 countermeasures in total for 2020.
- Ensure production of grain and other major crops
- Stabilize grain production to ensure the domestic supply of major crops. Major countermeasures include: ensure minimum sown area of rice, wheat and corn at 93 million ha to stabilize the market price of rice, wheat, corn and soybean; furthermore, implement the high standard farmland construction program, meet the target of 5.33 million ha high standard farmland and 1.33 million ha irrigated farmland; introduce new and high-quality and high-yield grain varieties; support new branding products; further increase the mechanization rate, etc.;
- Ensure the production of cotton, oil and sugar crops. Implement a preferential policy to maintain the minimum sown areas of cotton, oil and sugar crops at 3.33 million, 12.67 million and 1.6 million ha.
- Stabilize the vegetable food basket. Ensure the minimum sown areas of major vegetables to meet the consumption demand, particularly the market supply during the outbreak of COVID-19; promote the winter vegetable production in southern China, stabilize the greenhouse vegetable sown area in northern China; introduce seedling cultivation, water saving irrigation, and pest management techniques into vegetable production.
- Improve and strengthen agricultural disaster risk prevention and reduction system. Formulate and effectively implement a disaster emergency contingencies plan, establish communication lines with other agencies like meteorological, water and emergency agencies.
- Prevention and control of Spodoptera frugiperda (corn leafworm). Governments of major corn and wheat production regions in the Southwest, Yangtze River and central and China’s northern provinces must formulate and implement the pest prevention plan, set up an early pest early warning and response system to effectively prevent and control the outbreak of pests.
- Strengthen the pest management system. Further construct and improve the plant protection system and build up digitalized and standardized field pest monitoring systems, ensure an economic loss by pest damage lower than 5.0%.
- Designate local food security and food supply as responsibility of provincial and county governors. Ensure the minimum sown areas and production of major crops and products.
- Optimize the cropping structure to ensure overall efficiency of crop production
- Control and stabilize the maize sown area, further increase soybean sown area to 9.33 million ha, increase peanut sown area in region of Huang-Huai-Hai Rivers and rapeseed cultivation area in the provinces along the Yangtze River.
- Further support local resource-based and featured agricultural industry. Promote the production and build effective processing and marketing systems for economic crops, such as fruits, vegetables, tea, edible mushroom, tuberous crops, herbal medicine plants, silkworm, flowers and other horticultural products, etc.
- Introduce and further test crop rotation and fallow systems. Implement the pilot field with 2.0 million ha rotational cropping and fallow land, and further replicate this trial in Northeast provinces, Huang-Huai-Hai River Region and Yangtze River Region.
- Increase crop production quality and efficiency to ensure the farmer’s income
- Further improve the cultivation practices and quality of major grain products, such as high-quality rice, wheat and soybean. Introduce standardized production pattern to ensure the quality of the products; further develop local crop product brands.
- Promote the agricultural industrialization by merging the production, processing and marketing to one value chain. Support the development of contract- and order-based product purchasing mechanism; facilitate large agricultural enterprises to develop the processing and agro-industrial clusters; develop standardized apple, orange and grape production bases; support farmers to develop agri-tourism for increasing their cash income.
- Further improve food quality and level of food safety. Improve the pesticides and fertilizer quality standards, further revise the standards of chemical pesticide residues, further reduce pesticide and fertilizer application to ensure food safety;
- Pursue poverty reduction through industry development. Support poverty-stricken areas to develop local featured products and a local industrial system, strengthen the technical service and technical training for qualifying poor farmers, help poor and remote areas to develop market channels.
- Promote the green and sustainable crop production
- Further reduce the application of chemical fertilizers and increase the effective utility rate of major fertilizers at least to 40 %;
- Encourage farmers and producers to increase the use of organic fertilizers, step by step replace chemical fertilizers by organic fertilizers; treat and recycle livestock manure and waste of large livestock and poultry farms as organic fertilizers for feedstuff and fodder crop production as well as for horticulture and cash crop production;
- Further reduce the application of chemical pesticides and maintain “zero increase” to further reduce the chemical residues in the products, and control the non-point source pollutions by use of chemical inputs;
- Further promote the development and adoption of water saving technologies, particularly in the dryland farming area, to increase the water use efficiency; construct 220 water-saving demonstration districts in northwestern provinces.
- Carry out pilot projects to reduce the environmental pollution of packing materials of chemical pesticides and fertilizers. Establish an efficient system to recycle and treat expired pesticides and packing materials as well as the packing materials of chemical fertilizers; strictly supervise the enforcement of two agricultural environmental protection documents, i.e. Pesticide Packing Material and Waste Treatment Regulation and Guidelines for Recycle and Treatment of Chemical Fertilizers Packing Materials, promulgated by the Ministry of Ecology and Environment.
- Strengthen Governmental Administration and Service System
- Strengthen the overall administration and supervision of production, marketing and application of agricultural chemical pesticides. Step by step eliminate and ban the application of high poisonous chemical pesticides; establish a chemical residue traceability system to ensure the quality and safety of chemical pesticides, strengthen the chemical market supervision.
- Strengthen the fertilizer production and market quality supervision to ensure the quality of chemical fertilizers; establish and operate a fertilizer market demand assessment and publicize fertilizer supply and demand information; carry out an application safety assessment for newly developed organic fertilizers and biological soil conditioners.
- Further optimize the administrative approval system. In compliance with the administrative reform guideline, optimize the procedures of technical appraisal, administrative approval, a registration and certification system to ensure the quality and safety of chemical pesticides, fertilizers and other agricultural inputs. Strengthen the online quarantine system for imported crop species and varieties.
- Strengthen the construction and implementation of a regulatory system. Formulate and enact the National Crop Pest Prevention and Control Regulation, Regulation for Recycle and Treatment of Pesticides Packing Materials and Wastes, Regulation for Safe and Adequate Use of Crop Pesticides; Revise the Articles of National Phyto-sanitary Regulations, Registration Ordinance of Fertilizers, start the legislation process for the National Food Security Law.
- Carry out planning and formulation of programs and important policy research. For achieving the strategical goal of green and sustainable crop production, start the formulation of the National Seed Sector Development Planning (2021-2025), identify and set up the development goals and targets of 14th Five Year Crop Industry Planning, formulate National Pesticides Manufacture Development Planning (2021-2025), carry out policy studies on promoting crop production and ensuring the national food security.