Sharing the fruits of China's knowledge

2019-09-02 13:58:48 China Daily Mo Hong'e

Participants from developing countries attending a training course on tropical fruit production visit a greenhouse in Hainan. (Photo/China Daily)

Medardo Sanchez, an agriculture expert from El Salvador, traveled with 10 of his compatriots for nearly 50 hours to reach Hainan Island on July 15-the longest journey of his life.

The contingent had come to find solutions for agricultural problems in their homeland.

"As a tropical country, it is a shame we have to import many lichees every year because of the low yield of local fruit trees. To our dismay, some only grow flowers and bear no fruit," said Sanchez, an adviser to El Salvador's Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Husbandry.

The 25-day training course on production technology of tropical fruits for developing countries held in Hainan, China's only subtropical province, made his long journey worthwhile.

"I believe with the new skills learned in Hainan, lichee trees in my country will be able to bear more fruit and the output of pitaya (dragon fruit) is likely to grow 10 times from the current yield," Sanchez said at the closing ceremony on Aug 9 in Haikou, the capital of the province.

Judy Ngina, an agriculture expert from Kenya, said the course, which included lectures and practical classes from academics from the Chinese Academy of Tropical Agricultural Science at Hainan University was enlightening. Subjects covered included tropical crop cultivation, propagation, fertilization, pest management and processing of tropical fruits, she said.

"We will take home a wealth of deeper knowledge on planting, harvesting and post-harvesting technology of tropical fruits and cannot wait to put it into practice," she said.

The training course involved 28 participants from seven developing countries: El Salvador, Ghana, Kenya, the Philippines, South Africa, South Sudan and Uganda.

Over the past 15 years, with support from the central and Hainan governments, CATAS has organized more than 100 training courses for 4,000 participants from 95 countries.

The academy was established in 1958 and has played a major role in developing China's tropical agriculture industry, said Liu Guodao, vice-president of CATAS.


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