South China's Hainan Province established an association of areca nut growers on Friday to ensure sustainable and healthy development of the industry.

The tropical province has 1.3 million mu (about 90,000 hectares) of areca palm plantation, with 800,000 tonnes in annual output and a total value of 5 billion yuan (about 800 million US dollars) this year.

The areca nut is Hainan's second largest tropical commercial crop, ranking only to rubber. Income from areca nuts accounted for almost half of farmers' total income in Hainan, according to the association.

Lack of management and comparatively low yields are the current weakness of the industry.

The association will provide communication between producers and consumers to promote the industry, said Huang Kuilin, chairman of the association.


SOURCE: Global Times 

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