HARBIN, Oct. 15 (Xinhua) -- It is harvest time and a soybean harvester is working in a field in northeast China's Heilongjiang Province. Different from previous years, the harvester is now equipped with fenders and protective nets to prevent the soybeans from falling onto the ground.
In recent years, in order to effectively reduce losses during harvest, the farm has carried out renewal and improvement of harvesters, which has helped reduce the loss rate of its soybean harvest from 3 percent to 1 percent, said Tang Daoguang, deputy general manager of Jianshe Farm Co., Ltd. of Beidahuang Group.
"This year, our farm planted 202,700 mu (about 13,513 hectares) of soybeans, with an average yield of over 225 kg per mu. Every 1 percentage point decrease of harvest loss means a loss reduction of 2.25 kg of soybeans per mu and an increase of 456,000 kg in the farm's total soybean yield," Tang said.
Sunday marks the World Food Day. World food security faces challenges amid the COVID-19 pandemic and food loss and waste is still widespread worldwide.
According to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the global food loss rate is around 14 percent from harvest to retail.
China has made substantial progress in curbing loss and waste in food production and consumption during recent years. Heilongjiang, known as China's "grain barn," has formulated and implemented technical specifications for loss reduction, strengthened loss reduction training, accelerated the updating of machines and tools, and carried out loss rate detection for this autumn harvest.
At a modern agricultural machinery cooperative in Sunwu County, Heihe City, loads of corn are being dried by the drying tower.
"In the past, we harvested corn and just piled it up on the ground. The corn had high moisture and was prone to mildew and going bad. Now we can reduce the loss greatly by drying the corn first," said Wang Yuelong who is the head of the cooperative.
Grain loss is also reduced during storage with the help of a smart control system at a grain storage site of China Grain Reserves Group (Sinograin) in the provincial capital Harbin.
At the grain storage site, high-definition visual probes and sensors are equipped to monitor and control the temperature, humidity and insect pests in real time. Data is synchronously transmitted to the smart control system platform, so that timely warnings can be issued in case of abnormal situations to alert personnel to take appropriate measures.
Cities in China have also adopted regulations to curb food waste. Last year, the capital city of Beijing adopted a rule on tackling food waste, which requires eateries to deploy persuaders to caution against extravagant dining and food waste, and remind diners to pack leftovers.