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Urban China is starting to embrace the shoots of a new, green revolution

Yan Zong Wang on his allotment on the outskirts of Beijing. Photo by Adam Dean.

China goes organic after years of ‘glow in the dark pork’ and ‘exploding watermelons’

After years of nerve-racking food scares from “melamine milk” to “glow-in-the-dark” pork and “exploding watermelons” urban China is starting to embrace the shoots of a new, green revolution and is going organic.

By Peter Foster
The Telegraph
29 May 2011


From a runner-bean spotted spiralling along the balcony balustrade of a Beijing apartment, to long waiting-lists for allotments, a plethora of gardening websites and a mushrooming of organic farms and shops, Chinese families are increasingly looking to “grow their own”.

In recent years China has been hit by a number of food scandals and fears about safety have lingered. In 2008, 300,000 babies became seriously ill and six babies died after being given formula contaminated with the industrial chemical melamine.

Peng Xunan, the founder of the “Farmlander” allotment scheme that has 200 sites across China said the plots were being rented in ever-growing numbers, and no longer just be pensioners looking to occupy their time.

“I’d say it was split three ways between families who want to teach their children where food comes from, older people in their retirement, but in recent months definitely a growing number worried about food safety concerns after all these reports of lax food safety,” he said.

Read the complete article here.

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