By Gu Siyu
Since the 18th CPC National Congress, Xinjiang has highlighted rural revitalization and carried out structural reforms on the supply side of agriculture, optimized its agricultural structure and promoted the comprehensive development of agriculture.
In the past 10 years, modern agriculture has taken shape in Xinjiang with sufficient supply of food and important agricultural products, an effective form of production, and steady improvement in both the quality and efficiency of agricultural production.
Steady output growth of agriculture, forestry, animal husbandry and fishery
In 2021, the total output value of agriculture, forestry, animal husbandry and fishery in the region reached 514.31 billion yuan, up 70.4% over 2012, with an average annual growth of 6.1%. Output of agriculture, forestry, animal husbandry and fishery reached 348.899 billion, 7.912 billion, 126.569 billion and 3.595 billion yuan, respectively. Overall supply of food and important agricultural products in the region maintained steady growth, highlighting the role of agriculture as the “ballast” of economy.
Diversified structure of agricultural cultivation
Xinjiang’s diversified farming structure has helped farmers to increase income. Statistics of the Bureau of Statistics of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region show that in 2021 the region’s grain cultivation area reached 2,371,650 hectares, an increase of 6.3% over the previous year, which included 1,135,250 hectares of wheat, 1,110,260 hectares of corn. The planting area of cotton, oilseeds and sugar beets reached 2,506,070, 113,170 and 47,580 hectares, respectively.
Yields of agricultural products increased dramatically
Xinjiang’s grain output (including potatoes) in 2021 reached 17.36 million tons, up 9.6% year on year. Wheat output hit 6.40 million tons, up 9.9%; corn output hit 10.13 million tons, up 9.1%.
Cotton production totaled 5.13 million tons, down 0.6% year on year. Oilseed production registered at 544,400 tons, down 36.4%. Sugar beet production stood at 4.62 million tons, down 25.0%. The total output of special forest fruits reached 17.90 million tons, up 0.4%, and the vegetable yield reached 16.20 million tons.
Over the decade, the annual share of Xinjiang’s cotton production in the national total increased from 58.8% to 89.5%.
Livestock products on the rise
In 2021, Xinjiang’s output of pork, beef, lamb, and chicken meat totaled 1.83 million tons, up 16.1% year on year. Among them: lamb hit 604,400 tons, up 6.1%; beef hit 485,000 tons, up 10.3%; pork hit 498,500 tons, up 32.9%. As of the end 2021, cattle, sheep and pigs inventory registered at 56.22 million heads, up 10.8%. Cattle, sheep and pigs slaughtered totaled 450.21 million heads, up 5.2%.
Higher level of agricultural modernization
In the past 10 years, the total power of agricultural machinery in Xinjiang increased from 19.68 million kWh to 29.96 million kWh. In 2021, the mechanization rate of crop cultivation and harvest in Xinjiang reached 85.48%, of which, the mechanization rate for cotton hit 92.16%. In 2021, the total power of agricultural machinery in Xinjiang exceeded 24 million kilowatts, with a rate of agricultural mechanization leading the whole country.