Directly hit the betel nut industry chain: fresh fruit dropped from 30 yuan per catty to 18 yuan

  The embarrassing betel nut middleman loses money in shipping

  Recently, market supervision departments in many places have requested that betel nut be removed from the shelves, and food operators are not allowed to sell betel nut products as food.

  Some people worry that the impact on the betel nut industry will have a negative impact on the growers, but the Red Star Capital Bureau found that, unlike what the public imagined, it is not the growers who suffer the most, but the middlemen.

  Aside from the high price of 30 yuan/catties that appeared earlier this year, since late August, the price of betel nut fresh fruit has dropped from more than 20 yuan/catties to about 18 yuan/catties.

Even so, growers still have profits to make.

  But the middlemen are embarrassed.

An intermediary told the Red Star Capital Bureau that he received betel nut fresh fruit from growers at a price of 22 yuan/catties this year, but now, the betel nut fresh fruit bought for about 50 million yuan can only be stored after roasting. In the fresh-keeping freezer, wait and see the market.

Price: drop from 30 yuan to 18 yuan per catty of betel nut

  The Red Star Capital Bureau has learned from various parties that at present, my country's betel nut plantations are mainly in Hainan Province, while the deep processing enterprises are mainly concentrated in Hunan Province.

  According to the 2021 Statistical Yearbook of Hainan Province, by the end of 2020, the planting area of ​​betel nut in Hainan Province was 124,700 hectares, and the harvest area was 88,500 hectares. The province's total output of betel nut in 2020 reached 283,300 tons.

  The 100 mu of land contracted by Wan Qingbo (pseudonym) for planting betel nut trees is also included, “Generally there are 120 betel nut trees per mu, (I have) about 12,000, and the annual output of 100 mu of land is about 15 Ten thousand pounds."

  According to reports, the ripening period of betel nut fresh fruit is from August to December, which will be slightly different according to the latitude of different regions.

If it matures earlier than August, the fresh betel nut fruit tends to sell for a better price.

  "The highest selling price this year has been 30 yuan/catties, and some people have come to collect them in the past two days, but the price is a little lower, and now it is about 18 yuan/catties." Wan Qingbo said.

  Wan Qingbo said that including the cost of contracted land, labor costs, fertilization and other costs, the cost of fresh betel nut fruit per catty is 5-6 yuan; if the land is contracted after 2019, the cost may rise to about 10 yuan per catty .

  That is to say, even if the price of fresh betel nut fruit is around 18 yuan per kilogram, growers still have to make money.

However, the Red Star Capital Bureau noticed that practitioners in the entire betel nut industry chain are still worried, and they are worried that the situation in 2013 will recur.

  According to multiple media reports, the public was widely concerned about the carcinogenicity of betel nut at that time, and after that, it was difficult for growers to sell the fresh betel nut fruit at a price of 1.2 yuan/catties.

The person in charge of the relevant department said that the 2.3 million farmers who planted betel nut in Hainan have reduced their income by 3 billion yuan only for the betel nut green fruit (ie, fresh fruit).

Intermediary: 50 million yuan to receive the goods, and the immediate delivery will lose money

  The fresh betel nut fruit picked by the growers will get dried betel nut fruit after a certain process of roasting.

Generally speaking, 3-4 catties of betel nut fresh fruit can produce 1 catty of betel nut dried fruit.

  Wen Wu (pseudonym) is a middleman who bridges between the betel nut brand and the growers. He receives the betel nut fresh fruit from the grower, roasts it, and then sells the obtained betel nut dried fruit to the major betel nut brands.

  "In 2019, the highest retail price of betel nut in the (terminal) market was only 30 yuan per bag; around 2020, Taste King took the lead in launching products with 50 yuan per bag. Some high-end products have been launched, and the preceding raw materials have followed suit. Benefit." Wen Wu said that in the past two years, the purchase price of betel nut fresh fruit has been around 20 yuan/catties.

  The Red Star Capital Bureau noticed that Taste King is a leading brand in the betel nut industry, and its main body of operation is Hunan Taste King Group Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as "Taste King Group").

According to Xiaoxiang Morning News, in 2021, Taste King Group will enter the "2021 Hunan Top 100 Enterprises List" with a revenue of 4.235 billion yuan, ranking 97th.

  Wen Wu told the Red Star Capital Bureau that the taste king group has relatively high requirements for roasting, and it takes about 4 catties of fresh betel nut fruit to produce 1 catty of dried betel nut fruit that meets its requirements.

"The fresh fruit I have now is collected at 22 yuan per kilogram, and some of the waste has to be screened out and baked into dried betel nut fruit. The cost is almost 100 yuan per kilogram." Wen Wu said that now the taste king has opened the income. The price of the goods is 85 yuan/catties, and you will lose money when you ship it.

  In addition to Taste King, there are also other betel nut brands that are purchasing dried betel nut fruit, but the prices are not high and the quantity received is small.

  At present, Wenwu has been caught in a dilemma.

Shipping is a loss of money. If you don’t ship it, the cost will continue to increase. “I have stockpiled millions of kilograms of goods, and now I put them in the rented fresh-keeping freezer, and I have to pay rent every month.” Just receiving the goods In the past, Wenwu has spent about 50 million yuan, and every time the delivery date is delayed by one month, the cost of Wenwu will continue to increase due to the rent of the frozen warehouse.

Growers: I won't spend 300,000 yuan on heavy fertilizers this year

  The Diversified Betel Nut Platform shows that on September 23, the average purchase price of betel nut (fresh) fruit in Hainan Province was 17.69 yuan/catties, the highest was 19 yuan/catties, and the lowest was 16 yuan/catties.

  "I originally planned to contract another 100 acres of land. I planned to sign the contract in August. It was delayed due to the epidemic. Now, depending on the situation, I may have to wait and see." Wan Qingbo said that the land he contracted may have picked 1 /4 of the fresh betel nut fruit, the rest should be able to be sold, but it is impossible to predict how much the price can be sold.

  Unlike Wan Qingbo, on the 1,600 mu of land contracted by Yang Yuanchang (pseudonym), the betel nut tree has not yet bear fruit.

He started planting betel nut in 2021, and it will not bear fruit until about 2026-2027.

  "The investment in betel nut is huge and the cycle is long." Yang Yuanchang said that from contracting land to purchasing betel nut saplings, and then from fertilizer to management, he spent almost 10 million yuan.

Moreover, from now on, 2 million to 3 million yuan will be invested every year.

  Taking Wan Qingbo’s 100 acres of land as an example, heavy fertilizer is applied every December in the lunar calendar, and the cost is about 300,000 yuan. Fertilizers go in, which can increase the yield of betel nut.”

  "If the price (of betel nut fresh fruit) is not good, I will not put on heavy fat next time." Wan Qingbo said to the Red Star Capital Bureau.

News Watch

  How will betel nut go in the future?

  The Red Star Capital Bureau reviewed public papers and scholars’ works and found that, on the one hand, betel nut is a traditional Chinese medicine. In recent years, some scholars have found that betel nut or its components have pharmacological effects; on the other hand, some studies have pointed out that betel nut may bring harm to health.

  The book "Research on Betel Nut" by Liu Shuwei and Wang Yan, published by China Agricultural Science and Technology Press, mentions that in addition to snail control, deworming, and insecticide, betel nut and its components have effects on the nervous system, endocrine system, digestive system, and disease resistance. The original microorganisms, cardiovascular and cerebrovascular systems have certain positive effects.

  It should be noted that in the academic papers and works reviewed by the Red Star Capital Bureau, in addition to bringing comfort, increased saliva secretion, and increased heart rate, most of the other benefits are not achieved by directly chewing betel nut, but extracting the active ingredients in betel nut. .

  On the other hand, some doctors and scholars have compared the incidence of oral diseases between chewing betel nut and not chewing betel nut.

For example, from October 1985 to October 1987, the Xiangtan City Oral Mucosal Disease Prevention and Control Cooperative Group conducted a large-scale census of 11,046 people in the city and found 335 cases of oral submucosal fibrosis, all of which had the habit of chewing betel nut.

  With both pharmacological and toxicological effects, betel nut itself is a contradiction.

  However, the Red Star Capital Bureau noticed that the Hainan Province Betel Nut Industry Association may have taken a critical first step for the future of the betel nut industry.

Previously, the association issued a document saying that it is recommended that relevant departments should strengthen the research and development of products related to the betel nut industry, increase research investment in the homology of medicine and food, and develop more extended products for the medicinal use of betel nut.

  Chengdu Business Daily-Red Star News reporter Yang Peiwen