The harvesting season of Cordyceps sinensis, a tonic herb known as "soft gold", has started since late April in China's Qinghai Province.
Cordyceps sinensis is mainly distributed in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau at an altitude of 3,500 to 5,000 meters. It is a rare combination of a caterpillar and a fungus, believed to cure several diseases. Sunlight, timely monsoons, snow and altitude provide the best conditions for the reproduction of cordyceps.
The annual production of Cordyceps sinensis in Qinghai Province is about 80 to 100 tons, with an annual output value of 18 billion to 20 billion yuan (about $2.8 billion to $2.89 billion).