When Jingdong decided to venture into agriculture, they made one of the most unlikely choices. Not only did they choose an unlikely farming project (chicken farming,) but they also based it in one of the poorest regions in China. This is a county where people hardly think of farming, but the company chose to set up a 27-hacter farm there. Several years down the line, these choices are proving to be on point. They have helped to bring new solutions and ideas to farmers, especially those who prefer to keep free-range chicken.
Giving back to society
Through the JD.com chicken farms, the company is giving back to the society by ensuring that chicken farmers have better ways to run their farms. In addition to that, they are assisting them by giving out low-cost loans. There are more than 500 families that are benefiting from these farms, and the company says that these families are earning thousands every year. It is something that has improved the quality of their lives, especially when you remember the fact that the region had been ravaged by poverty before the farms were established. In addition to that, there are locals who get jobs from the farms such as providing maintenance services and growing vegetables.
A healthier and more ethical solution
Jingdong says that apart from providing food and jobs, the farms by the company have provided a healthier and more ethical way to rear chicken. For example, they pointed out that the norm has been battery farms where animals spend their lives caged in small units. Most of these units do not even have windows and therefore, they make life unbearable for the animals. In addition to that, such animals do not get the right nutrition because they are fed on artificial products. If you look at the free-range ones, you will notice that they are allowed to feed freely and naturally.
JD.com says that they use special pedometers to feed each chicken. The goal is to make sure that every bird will be taking a million steps during the rearing process. It is a new approach that is changing the way farming is done in China and beyond.
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