China Agricultural University has made breakthroughs in developing new wheat varieties with higher protein and mineral content with support from Pinduoduo's '10 Billion Agriculture Initiative,' paving the way for the production of healthier food.
'Nongda 753' is a new high-quality selenium-enriched wheat variety cultivated by the Wheat Research Center of China Agricultural University. The protein level and selenium content of 'Nongda 3753' are about 15% and 67.5% higher than ordinary varieties, respectively, while zinc levels have increased by 25%. The seed coat is rich in anthocyanins, which studies have shown have a positive impact on immunity and maintaining heart health.
Together with Nongda 761, the two new high-quality wheat varieties are being widely planted in Henan, Hebei, Shandong, and other major wheat-producing regions in China. The breakthrough in wheat development was achieved with the support of Pinduoduo's '10 Billion Agriculture Initiative,' which was launched in August 2021 to channel more resources into addressing critical needs in the agriculture sector and rural areas.
Pinduoduo said then that the initiative would strive to facilitate the advancement of agritech, promote digital inclusions, and provide agritech talents and workers with greater motivation and a sense of achievement. Pinduoduo Chairman and CEO Chen Lei said at the time that the company saw the need to address critical issues in agriculture as an "important and challenging task, which we will invest in patiently."
Pinduoduo and China Agricultural University are long-time partners in promoting agricultural research and technology. The two are co-organizers of the annual Smart Agriculture Competition that gathers data scientists and agricultural researchers to develop practical, cost-effective agritech solutions that can help smallholder farmers solve their problems.
Pinduoduo has described its approach to agricultural modernization as 'Tech for Agri,' a holistic approach that focuses on increasing market access for farmers, equipping them with the right digital skills, and supporting the development and deployment of agritech to deliver a productivity leapfrog.