On August 18, 2020, a meeting was held in Zhaotong city, China. World Potato Congress (WPC) President Roman Cools, Dr. Peter VanderZaag, WPC Secretary and Brian Douglas, General Manager attended virtually. At this meeting, a ceremony was held to recognize Zhaotong as the “Potato Plateau Seed Potato Capital of the World”.
Yang Yalin, Party Secretary of the Zhaotong Municipal CPC Committee spoke at the ceremony. Li Zhiping, Deputy Director of the Foreign Economic Cooperation Center of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs also attended the ceremony.
On behalf of the Zhaotong Municipal Committee, the municipal government, and the city’s 6.29 million people, Yang Yalin thanked the World Potato Congress, the Ministry of Agriculture of China, the Agricultural and Rural Department of Yunnan Province, and all well-known international and domestic potato experts. He said: “the inextricable relationship between potatoes and Zhaotong not only comes from nature and a long history, but also has long become a part of the production and life of Zhaotong people, and has been integrated into the blood and culture of Zhaotong people”.
Today, in Zhaotong, potatoes are not only an important support to bring millions of people out of poverty, but also the hope for accelerating development. For poverty alleviation, the potato industry has the closest connection with the population. Zhaotong must make full use of new ideas, new technologies, innovation mechanism, integrate factor resources, standardization and brand development and strive to realize the transformation of “this potato is not the other potato.” The potato has become important for poverty alleviation given the unique advantages of geographical and climatic conditions. Therefore, there is a need for large-scale development of high-quality seed potato base to meet both local and broader demand.
Yang Yalin said: “we will take the opportunity upon receiving this award of “Potato Plateau
Seed Potato Capital in the World” to build 40,000 hectares of high standard seed potato base and 160,000 hectares of high quality commercial potato base in Zhaotong. We will actively expand cooperation and exchanges with surrounding regions in Asia.
On behalf of the Foreign Economic Cooperation Center of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, Li Zhiping congratulated Zhaotong on being named “Potato Plateau Seed Potato Capital of the World”. She hoped that Zhaotong’s potato industry would pay attention to scientific and technological research and development and increase the added value of the potato industry; strengthen industrialization construction and promote farmers to enter the market; promote the sharing of industrial development and poverty alleviation experience at home and abroad; and speed up the promotion of the potato industry.
On behalf of World Potato Congress President, Roman Cools, Elven Huang, WPC Director and Lu Xiaoping, WPC International Advisor awarded the plaque to Yang Yalin along with city leaders Zhang Shaoxiong, Su Jianhong, and Hao Liuyong.