On 15 July, the "Scenic Ningde, Capital of Large Yellow Croakers" Fujian Province - Jiaocheng District "Ningde Large Yellow Croaker" Beijing Promotion Event was held at Shangri-La Hotel Beijing. The event was hosted by the Party Committee of Jiaocheng District, Ningde Prefecture Level City, the People's Government of Jiaocheng District, as well as the District Bureau of Culture, Sports, and Tourism, the District Bureau of Ocean and Fisheries, and the District Bureau of Commerce. The event saw the participation of more than 200 people, including leaders from Fujian Province, Ningde Prefecture Level City, Jiaocheng District, and relevant industry associations, as well as respected individuals from Jiaocheng living in Beijing and journalists from media organizations.
The event included an exhibition dedicated to special Ningde large yellow croaker products, as well as the Jiaochen "Ningde Large Yellow Croaker" special promotion campaign, a tasting session for unique large yellow croaker dishes, and ethnic music and dance performances showcasing the culture of the She ethnic group living in Jiaocheng. Through various forms of activities such as viewing the display of speciality dishes, listening to promotion lectures on Jiaocheng"Ningde Large Yellow Croaker", discussing cooperation opportunities regarding the production and marketing of large yellow croakers, and presenting authorization certificates at a live signing ceremony, the event invited the guests to experience the unique cultural and ethnic customs of Jiaocheng and appreciated in-depth the "Large Yellow Croaker" culture as well as the She ethnic group culture in Jiaocheng, showcasing the development condition of the ocean and fisheries industry in Ningde City, promoting the high-quality development of the Ningde large yellow croaker industry.
In recent years, Jiaocheng District experienced rapid economic development and has leapfrogged into the leading district in Ningde City in terms of development, becoming the new growth pole of Fujian Province. In 2022, Ningde City historically joined the rank of "Top 100 Cities in China", while Jiaocheng District moved forth into the national "Top 100 Economic Districts" whilst remaining one of the "Best 10 Districts" in Fujian Province.
As the Chinese saying goes, "When living by the mountains, live off the mountains and learn to sing folk songs there; when living by the sea, live off the sea and learn to read the classic book of the sea there." Situated between mountains and the coastline of the East China Sea, Ningde City enjoys vast sea and coastal mudflat areas, making fish farming an important channel for promoting Ningde's economic development. Ningde large yellow croaker is a regional marine fish unique to China; it is also the marine fish with the largest farming scale and production output in the country, which used to top the list of the "Four Major Fishery Species" in China. Ningde large yellow croaker carries unique cultural connotations; its golden color symbolizes wealth, auspiciousness, and nobility; its delicious taste and tender flesh provide the raw material for traditional Chinese gourmet food. There is no surprise as to why Ningde is known as "the hometown of Chinese large yellow croakers" and "the Capital of Chinese large yellow croakers".
In the 1970s, the average annual harvest of large yellow croakers in China was approximately 12 tons. However, as a result of overfishing and extensive operations, the large yellow croaker resource in the East China Sea gradually became exhausted. In an attempt to save the large yellow croakers, Fujian Province organized research into the artificial breeding technology of large yellow croakers by calling together aquatic scientists and technicians in the eastern part of the province. In 1985, Mr. Liu Jiafu, the leading researcher in large yellow croaker breeding, launched the first artificial breeding trial for large yellow croakers with his team, achieving initial progress in areas of artificial insemination in the sea, indoor breeding, wildlife preservation, and successful domestication. In 1987, the very first batch of more than a hundred large yellow croakers was successfully bred using artificial breeding technology; in 1990, the output amount of the artificial breeding of large yellow croakers exceeded one million; in 1995, the problem of the low growth rate of large yellow croakers was tackled, and the complete technical procedure for cage and pond farming of large yellow croakers was formulated, leading to an enormous harvest for fish farmers who were conducting trial breeding.
At present, there are over 90 large yellow croaker fish farms in Ningde City breeding over 3 billion large yellow croakers annually, among which 2 are provincial-level original breed farms, and 2 are national demonstration farms of modern breeding. The city also hosts the only national-level large yellow croaker original breed fish farm, the only national key laboratory for large yellow croaker farming, and the only national-level large yellow croaker genetics and breeding center in China.
In recent years, Ningde City, together with Jiaocheng District, has been actively encouraging and supporting the leading enterprises in aquaculture in the regions to participate in fishery expositions both in China and abroad, building fishing villages as well as tourist towns with unique characters with online presence and influence through the organization of a series of events including the "bringing the national fish to the state banquet" industry development research seminar, the "presenting the national fish, bringing fortune to Jiaocheng" roadshow, the large yellow croaker fishing season, and the large yellow croaker cultural festival, showcasing the charm of Ningde large yellow croaker in an all-round and multi-angled way, promoting the development of fishery brands such as the "Ningde Large Yellow Croaker". On the one hand, the regions seek to give full play to the brand influence of "Capital of Chinese Large Yellow Croakers", coordinate and integrate all levels of aquaculture enterprises, promote the development of well-known, leading enterprises in aquatic product processing, creating concentrated advantages in areas such as resource supply, product processing, and market expansion; on the other hand, the regions also hope to increase the online presence and influence of the "National Fish", guiding aquaculture enterprises to target market needs, increasing research funding and the output of innovative new products, helping fish farmers increase their income through "Internet Plus" platforms, introducing large yellow croakers to the world. At present, the effort of a single enterprise - Jinsheng Aquatic Product - in online marketing through platforms such as Tianmao and Jingdong alone has benefited 2000 fish farmers.
Through relentless innovation of new products and channels, Ningde large yellow croaker has become the marine fish with the largest breeding scale in China, forming a complete industry chain constituted by elements such as fish fry rearing, artificial breeding, processing and marketing, fishery feeds and medicine supply, storage and logistics, in addition to tourism and hospitality, embarking on a new racetrack for large yellow croakers to become a bestselling product nationwide and a renowned brand worldwide.
In the meantime, Jiaocheng District is actively implementing the "Ocean Economy" strategy implemented by the Party Committee and People's Government of Fujian Province as well as the "National Fish" plan implemented by the Party Committee and People's Government of Ningde Prefecture Level City, scientifically adjusting and improving the layout of breeding grounds and industry structures, strengthening planning, guidance, and market regulation and up-playing the policy and funding support regarding the development of the large yellow croaker industry chain through projects that drive resource integration, aiming to construct a development pattern characterized by "six centers" (the National Large Yellow Croaker Original Breed Farming Center, the National Large Yellow Croaker Breeding Center, the National Large Yellow Croaker Processing Center, the National Large Yellow Croaker Big Data Center, and the National Large Yellow Croaker Culture and Tourism Center) with the large yellow croaker industry playing the leading role within five years' time, building a "Capital of Chinese Large Yellow Croakers" that integrates fish fry rearing, breeding, processing, marketing, research, as well as culture and tourism, realizing the vision of introducing "large yellow croaker" to the nation and the world.