Xi Focus-Closeup: "Of all things, eating matters most"

Politics 25

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BEIJING, Sept. 23 (Xinhua) -- President Xi Jinping always attaches great importance to China's food security, emphasizing the need to secure adequate food for the people on multiple occasions.

Of all things, eating matters most, and food is the most basic necessity of the people, Xi, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission, once said.

Ahead of the fifth Chinese farmers' harvest festival, which falls on Friday, Xi urged Party committees and governments at all levels to enhance their efforts in ensuring grain security and encouraged farmers to play an active part in accelerating the modernization of agriculture and rural areas.

Xi's words resonated with hundreds of millions of farmers across the country. Xu Congxiang is one of them.

Xu, 69, from Taihe County of east China's Anhui Province, wrote a letter to Xi this summer, telling about his experience of growing grain and his decade-long efforts in helping villagers get rid of poverty. He established in 2010 an agricultural planting cooperative covering 1,230 mu (82 hectares) of cultivated land.

Shortly after, Xu received a reply letter from Xi. In the letter, Xi said he was pleased to learn that Xu had reaped a bumper wheat harvest and that Xu's offspring have followed in his footsteps to work in agriculture.

Xi expressed the hope that large-scale grain producers can leverage the advantages in scale operations, actively apply modern agricultural technologies, and set an example for small household farmers to expand grain production and improve grain quality, thus jointly contributing to national food security.

"The reply letter is quite inspiring and shows that he pays high attention to agricultural development, which strengthens my confidence in grain growing," said Xu upon receiving the letter.

This summer, the wheat yield in Xu's demonstration farmland exceeded a record 800 kg per mu. He also planted 16 new varieties of corn in his experimentation farmland, and he is expecting a bumper autumn harvest in October. ■