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Cattle plan leads poor villagers to prosperity
 updatetime:2021-05-10 11:58:24   View:0 Source:China Daily

Wei Guiqun reaps forage grass to feed cattle in Anning village of Du'an Yao autonomous county, Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region.

The 47 year-old, who is from the Yao ethnic group, used to suffer a heavy burden to support his family of seven, which includes senior parents and three school children.

In 2017, Wei received a calf through the government-lead "cattle for cattle" project. The next year, he sold it for more than 11,000 yuan ($1,700), earning a profit of over 5,000 yuan.

Since most of the county is made up of karst mountainous areas, lack of arable land and limited transport make it difficult for villagers to find a way out of poverty.

After a long period of research, a new poverty alleviation model known as "cattle for cattle" was developed in 2016.

According to Wei Ke, head of Anning village, poor households raise calves of beef cattle provided by livestock companies using small poverty alleviation loans. The livestock companies then buy them back when they are grown. In this way, more cattle are then loaned out, benefiting all involved.

"Now I have more than 10 head of cattle. With the government's help, the more cattle you raise, the more income it will bring," said Wei Guiqun.

In order to expand the scale of cattle raising, Wei Ke explored starting a cooperative in which villagers are involved as shareholders in 2017.

"Villagers were reluctant to participate at first due to a fear of failure," said Wei Ke.

To help villagers better engage in animal husbandry and reduce the risks involved, the local government has introduced a series of measures including cattle insurance, spreading knowledge of cattle disease prevention and control, breeding skills training and exchanges, and ensuring forage supplies.

These measures not only ease poor households' worries over cattle raising, but also ensure that development of the industry is stable and sustainable.

With the firm support of government, 17 householders finally joined the cooperative to co-raise 20 head of cattle with an investment over 1 million yuan.

In early 2018, when the first batch of cattle was sold, shareholders of the cooperative reaped their first revenue.

"I got 10,000 yuan at a time. It's unbelievable!" said Wei Guichun, who invested 60,000 yuan in the cooperative.

However, a forage crisis is another challenge in cattle breeding.

The cooperative suffered a forage shortage in the winter of 2018.

According to local official Lan Lin, villagers have to purchase it for 700 yuan a metric ton.

"We felt heartache every time the truck of forage came into our village since we have to pay a lot."

The government then encouraged villagers to grow forage grass instead of corn and rice.

Web Editor:MXJ