Instead of a grand entrance, we were welcomed by just a simple sign and brick house surrounded by paddy fields. It was like walking into a tranquil paradise. The small winding road led us to an evergreen goji berry garden. There, we were embraced by the warmth of the guardian of this land, Mr. Lin Rong-xiang, ready to tell us the story of the goji berry root of Taoyuan.
Back to Taoyuan: The land of thousand ponds
Having grown up as a farmer here, Mr. Lin has a deep connection with the land. When he was in his 40s, he made up his mind to give up his job at an electrical appliance store in Taipei and returned home to engage in farming. On this place he calls home, Mr. Lin opts to use his own way to plant native produce.
Due to the high-variety, low-volume policy of the agricultural industry in Taiwan, Mr. Lin decided to grow ginseng goji berries with clean waters from Shimen Canal. The slightly cool weather makes the environment even more perfect for growing pure, organic goji berries.
Achieving balance with nature
Mr. Lin adopts eco-friendly farming. Once goji berry roots are harvested, there is a 4-year restoration period which includes 2 years of soil cultivation and 2 years of crop restoration. This helps to recover soil fertility and promote sustainable agriculture.
Like humans, crops can also thrive in the face of adversity. When goji berry roots reach their 6th year, Mr. Lin doesn’t cut off the leaves or remove weeds; instead, he lets nature take its course to conserve soil moisture for healthy plant growth. He doesn’t want to be overprotective to crops. He allows them to bravely explore and grow, coexisting in harmony with nature to achieve a natural balance.
Learning from nature
Ginseng goji berries, named for its ginseng-smelling roots, thrive in subtropical climates. The roots have a 6-year growth period in order to obtain sufficient nutrients and active ingredients. As for dealing with pests, Mr. Lin is determined adopting eco-friendly approaches to prevent from harming the environment. When goji berry roots are damaged by insects, he has to get rid of them and wait for them to grow again. Even though this greatly reduces crop production, he has not given up. Mr. Lin believes that the key to solving this problem is to improve soil quality. He looks after his farm the same way he would care for his children, observing them with love and patience. He believes that crops will give you as much as the love and care you give them; that’s how nature works. Learn from nature. Transform 10 years of effort into a healthy goji berry root.
Taoyuan: The home of goji berry root
What’s more, Mr. Lin also began to develop an online platform for sharing recipes, turning farm produce into delicious dishes. He mentioned that farmers cannot afford to have ingredients verified and tested, so the only thing he could do was do some research. Working together, we discovered the magnificent benefits of goji berry roots and how this precious ingredient can be used in skin care to keep people young and healthy from the inside out.
With over 20 years of research and observation of goji berries, Mr. Lin wants to make Taoyuan’s Guanyin the home of goji berry. Along with O’right, we can create magic by infusing oriental medicine with modern green technology in Taoyuan.