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City takes measures to ensure food supply
From:Shanghai Daily  |  2020-02-13 08:29

SHANGHAI’S commissions of commerce, as well as agriculture and rural affairs, have taken various steps to ensure the supply of essential food and goods, the Shanghai government said yesterday.

Liu Min, deputy director of the commerce commission, said that there had been a 50 percent surge in online orders for fresh food.

Every day, Shanghai residents make around 500,000 online orders for some 150 tons of pork and 500 tons of vegetables.

“To ensure supply, the commission is cooperating with related government departments and all districts to work out solutions,” said Liu. “Firms are urged to enhance cooperation with food suppliers on purchase and restocking. We also support major e-commerce platforms in getting vegetables from other provinces like Shandong, Yunnan and Fujian, which has reached a million tons a day on average. During peak periods, the platforms restock vegetables seven to eight times a day.”

Liu said the commission is helping enterprises work with farmers wholesale markets to find new suppliers and ensure abundant stock.

The commission also helps e-commerce firms gain fast pass access to the city with the assistance of local police and the transport authority.

About 70 percent of the staff from fresh food online platforms are on duty but the number of products in each order is double the usual and the delivery workload has tripled.

“To solve this problem, major e-commerce platforms are sharing their employees with catering enterprises. The number of shared staff has now reached 1,500,” said Liu.

As more people return to the city after the Spring Festival holiday, the demand for vegetables is rising.

Ye Junping, deputy director of the agriculture and rural affairs commission, said they have increased the planting of vegetables at all agricultural zones, even using vacant land to grow vegetables.

The commission has provided 15,000 tons of vegetable seeds for local farmers. This month, vegetables have been planted on some 20 square kilometers of land. Now Shanghai has some 266.67 square kilometers of vegetables under cultivation, with yields over 10 percent higher than in the same period last year.

Ye said almost 120 agricultural cooperatives, enterprises and production bases in the city’s nine districts with an agricultural industry have launched delivery services.

Some 3,000 tons of vegetables produced in the city go to local markets daily and prices are falling back.

Ye said the commission’s next steps will be strengthening coordination between the city and districts, fully implementing the responsibility system and ensuring the sources of vegetable supply.

To tackle labor shortage, the commission is encouraging government staff, Party members and volunteers to help with vegetable production.