Before October 1, strawberries produced at an altitude of 4,000 meters entered the Chengdu Fresh Hema Supermarket, enabling people to eat winter strawberries two months earlier. According to Xiong Zhiran, purchasing director of Chengdu Fresh Hema, taking advantage of the high-altitude climate in Litang County, Ganzi, Sichuan, Fresh Hema customized winter strawberries for foodies. Since entering the market, the supply of this kind of strawberry has exceeded demand, and many stores have been out of stock.
It is reported that Litang County has an altitude of more than 4,000 meters, making it one of the highest cities in the world. Four years ago, Fresh Hema established Hema Village in the local area, taking advantage of the high-altitude climate, directional planting ingredients from high mountains for customers in plain areas, and launched its own brand of "High Mountain Fresh".
According to Xiong Zhiran, high-altitude areas, with sufficient sunshine and large temperature differences between day and night, are conducive to the absorption of sugar from crops. The agricultural products here are sweeter and have a better taste than those in the plains. The value of Litang Hema Village is not only to cultivate high-quality agricultural products but also to take advantage of the off-season to achieve "food anytime".
After 4 years of breeding and trial planting, this year Hema and base suppliers have jointly developed high-quality, stable-yield alpine Hongyan strawberries, which will land in Chengdu's Fresh Hema supermarkets in mid-September.
According to Yang Fan, the person in charge of Litang Hema Village Base, in the past four years, seven varieties of strawberries have been tried and it was found that Hongyan is the most suitable for Litang’s climate. Over the past four years, Hema has sent strawberry experts many times from Shanghai to the site for guidance, and together they have established a cold chain supply channel from the plateau to the Chengdu Plain, that means there is no more than 24 hours from picking to shelf for these alpine strawberries.
Xiong Zhiran said that because of the changeable plateau climate and unstable flights, Fresh Hema has established a dual logistics chain that combines air and land transportation to minimize the loss of strawberries. Hema is planning with the base to expand the planting of alpine strawberries and is looking forward to achieving a full-year supply to fill the gap where no strawberries are on the market from April to November.