Feature: Wisconsin ginseng grower eyes Chinese market by attending China import expo

Source: Xinhua| 2019-05-11 19:45:34|Editor: ZX
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CHICAGO, May 11 (Xinhua) -- Jiang Mingtao, a ginseng grower in Marathon County in the U.S. state of Wisconsin, was relieved recently after securing a booth at the second China International Import Expo (CIIE) scheduled for early November this year.

Jiang originally planned to rent a 300-square-meter exhibition area at the expo for his ginseng products as well as Wisconsin specialties.

Though getting only one booth falls short of his expectation, he is still happy and has not changed his mind to exhibit all his products.

Jiang attended the first CIIE last year in Shanghai, where he put on display his Monken Garden brand ginseng gift boxes, ginseng cosmetics, ginseng liquor, and ginseng extract tonics in two booths.

"I got acquainted with many (Chinese) businesses and clients, and they for the first time had a taste of Wisconsin ginseng," said Jiang. "We signed letters of intent on cooperation."

A Chinese trade dealer even flew all the way to the United States to visit Jiang's farm after the expo.

Given its largest scale and number of visitors, the CIIE is "a window to exports to China," he said.

Jiang returned from the first CIIE with more confidence in the Chinese market. This year, he plans to expand his ginseng production by 30-50 percent.

"Wisconsin ginseng is unparalleled in terms of purity, taste and flavor," he told Xinhua. "Chinese consumers speak highly of Wisconsin ginseng, whereas the fact is (that) Wisconsin accounts for less than 10 percent of the world's total ginseng production."

Jiang launched the Marathon Ginseng International Inc. in 2010, and targeted the Chinese market from the beginning. By 2015, the company had exported half of its production to the Chinese market.

Jiang also said he felt the biggest difficulty is tariff, which is at present 38.5 percent, dampening the competitiveness of Wisconsin ginseng somewhat.

In addition, Jiang's company is managing to keep up with strict standards set by China for ginseng imports. But with the experience of the first CIIE, he now has full confidence in the market.