History of Hefeng Tea
In 1988, Zhou Jiran established Hubei Hefeng Xinnong Tea (Group) Co., Ltd. Starting from a small mill, with the basic orientation of specialization, cluster, and externalization, he made great efforts in developing Enshi selenium-rich tea products and created “Baiguo” series of products that sold well all over China, and the export products, “Floria” and “Eraki” were quite popular in the international market. In 2016, the company produced 5,000 tons of tea, with 64 million U.S. dollars sales income and 6 million U.S. dollars tea export. It is the first enterprise that produces organic pinhead tea in Hubei and the first self-support tea export enterprise in Enshi, as well as the first “agricultural industrialization provincial leading enterprise” in the tea industry of Hefeng county. In 2013, it was listed in the “Top 100 Tea Enterprises of Comprehensive Strength of China”.
In 1992, Zhou Jiran decided to build a tea base in the deserted mountain area——Mu’er Shan. He personally led more than 300 farmers to open up waste land to plant teas. And after 2 years, the mountain area accounting for 660 hectares was finally turned into a tea garden.
In 1996, he innovatively launched a poverty alleviation project, to help the poverty-stricken households that cannot rely on their local resources move to Mu’er Shan Tea Base to make a better living. 68 households and 338 people were relocated in total. After the relocation, he allocated the tea garden to the immigrants and repaired road, supplied water, built houses and factories for them, all free of charge. After a few years, the annual income of immigrants reached 3000 U.S. dollars. Mu’er Shan Tea Base was therefore turned into the largest ecological organic tea garden in China. It is one of the “Most Beautiful Thirty Tea Gardens of China” and is known as the “World Tea Valley”.