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The docking industry of Pixian Douban with the history of three hundred years 4.0 How to retain the ancient flavor?

From:Sichuan Online NewsInput Date:2017-06-20 〖Font:Big Medium Small〗〖 Print 〗〖 1774 viewer 〗〖 Close

Sichuan Online News (Reporter: Zhang Hongxia) During the holiday of Dragon Boat Festival, the deputy director of Economy and Science and Technology Bureau of Pidu District, Peng Xuemei, was busy to make preparations for the experts of Institute of Microbiology Chinese Academy of Sciences to research in Chengdu. On April 27, a cooperative agreement was signed by Pidu District and the Institute in Beijing to study the microbial population of Pixian Douban (horsebean chili paste) and decipher the flavor code of “sauce aroma” with the history of three hundred years.

This industry has maintained the 15-20% growth rate in recent years at the transition stage from the traditional production into the industrialization. The industry of Pixian Douban began the process of industrialization with the whole industry output value increased from 10 billion to 50 billion. What kind of transformation challenges are they facing?

Puzzle1: How does industrialization keep traditional flavors?

I saw a large number of red earthenware crocks, one by one at three vertical rows, on the roof of the building.

On May 27, a successor for intangible cultural heritage, Zhang Jun said, “what you saw on the roof is the traditional fermentation brewing process of Pixian Douban” at the open terrace of Sichuan Pixian Douban Co., Ltd.

There were pale brown soybeans for starter-making in March this year at one row. “They are made of the best green broad bean over the country, absolutely no genetically modified ingredients,” Zhang Jun said. The company inherited the process of Pixian Douban three hundred years ago from the founder “the Chens”. The starter-making is the critical part that never be introduced to the outside, just like Coca-Cola’s confidential recipe. After drying for 4 months, the salted Douban will go through the second pepper embryo and begin to the long fusion with spicy pepper.

At one row, it is Douban that has been fermented for a year with red color and spicy flavor. “This is the first-class Douban sold on the market and used in fried Mapo Tofu and Twice Cooked Pork.”

At another row, it is Douban that has been fermented for two-seven years in the order of time. The color changed from red, brown red into deep sauce color, the size of the bean became smaller and smaller, and the sea pepper with two or three centimeters long also mixed into Douban and disappeared.

Zhang Jun take the seven-year Douban with a wooden spoon, and its smell is really fascinating with sweet sauce flavor and mellow fragrance! “We can call it ‘King of Douban’, can we? , “Can say so, we supply to Zhongnanhai directly. There are thousands of pounds on the order every year,” Zhang Jun introduced.

What is the mystery of the “sauce flavor” of Pixian Douban? Zhang Jun said three words: turn, dry and dew, which means direct sunlight during the day, dew during the night, and wooden pestle every day. There are 18 workers pestling one by one on this terrace every morning. They turn up the Douban under the surface to make sure that the heat is balanced. In this process, mold, lactic acid, yeast interacted to generate a variety of micro-organisms, also formed a unique flavor of Pixian Douban. It should be said that turning is the most consumable process of labor.

This is purely handmade production. How much the annual output is? “Two or three thousand or so,” Zhang Jun said, “the most expensive Douban can be sold at the price of up to 540 yuan per catty, which is more than 20 times than ordinary Douban.”

Last year, the company sold 27,000 tons that certainly cannot be finished by pure hand, only depending on mechanization. So, Zhang Jun came to an industrial drying field.

There are many long-shaped containers filled with Douban at different colors and in different years in a large transparent shed, in which several workers are operating the equipment to “pestle” Douban. Two strips work at the same time, and 20 tons Douban are completed at a few minutes. What the labor cannot imagine is that 664 strips and 7 sets of equipment do their job in three hours.

The flavor of seven-year Douban is tasteless comparing with those in the terrace, lack of mellow sweet, “This may be related to the dew,” Zhang Jun analyzed.

In the opinion of Huang Jiaquan, the company’s technical director, this should be the contents of the study for microbial experts to research and figure out its type and production conditions. Perhaps we can retain the flavor of the three hundred years in the next step of industrial intelligence.

Puzzle 2: Whether can we introduce the industrial equipment at front-end industry?

Dandan Douban is the “sales champion” among one hundred Pixian Douban enterprises. Its sales revenue reached 460 million yuan last year. Mr. Yue Ping, chairman of the company, is also the president of Pixian Douban Association. Speaking to industrial equipment, he introduced the three kinds of equipment currently used: turner, labeling machine and ink jet printer, and these are in the middle or back production link.

In 2015, the total output of Pixian Douban was over one million tons, and the total sales income was billions of dollars. It is called “over ten billion twins”, and the production enterprises have reached 100, forming an industrial cluster.

In 2016, Pixian Douban brand evaluation value reached 65 billion yuan, involving nearly 3,000 patents and ranking first at geographical indications products of processed food in the country and at geographical indication products in Sichuan, to become the province’s industry card of local products. Pidu District will strive to achieve its full industry output value of 50 billion yuan in next five years.

Zhang Anqiu, a provincial successor for intangible cultural heritage, has engaged in Douban industry for more than 40 years. This year’s production target of Sichuan Pixian Douban Co., Ltd. where he worked is 30,000 tons, in his view, which is close to the upper limit of production capacity. In the key part of the starter-making workshop, with technicians’ 24-hour production and 24-hour monitoring, they can make more than 7,000 tons “Qubanzi”. After adding pepper embryo, Douban production goes up to 20,000 tons. “If you want to reach 1 billion sales revenue, the output will be three or four times more”, Zhang Anqiu thinks that industrial equipment is the only way to achieve the goal.

“With the increasing cost of labor, it has some difficulties to recruit workers, so we must solve the equipment problems of Douban industry,” Yue Ping said. In March 19 this year, the domestic condiment industry’s first “National Enterprise  Technology Center” settled in Pixian Douban, and inaugurated in Dandan Pixian Douban Co., Ltd. Yue Ping said that one of the “critical task” is to strengthen the equipment public relations, because Pixian Douban enterprises generally find it difficult to achieve mechanization in front process, hoping to realize the instrumentation under the premise of retaining the traditional flavor as soon as possible.

In May 27, 19 Class A enterprises of flavoring get together to promote the exchange of industry in Pidu District. Gaofuji company learn from the experience of soy sauce industry and develop the canned equipment from the fermentation to the production of finished products, and it will be put into operation in July and August, causing a strong interest in visiting the enterprise.

Dandan Douban is preparing a new plant covering 100 acres combined with the technology research of “National Enterprise Technology  Center”. When put into production in 2020, it will form the industry 4.0 version with full chain of equipment, intelligence, automation. Sichuan Pixian Douban Co., Ltd. plans to invest 50 million yuan this year, which will strive to achieve full automation of red oil Douban full-automation, Pixian Douban semi-automation and equipment level of other aspects.

“There are still many difficulties without mature equipment on the market. The situation of each enterprise is not the same, and we need to research and develop the equipment by ourselves. one is the high cost, the other is a few enterprises with the ability of R & D on the market”. In the tender stage, Huang Jiaquan hopes that the whole industry can stick together and gather the scattered forces to get through this.

Puzzle 3: How does derivatives combine with Douban?

The Chans, founder of Pixian Douban have two brands, “Juancheng” and “Shaofeng”. In 2007, the two brands were entitled as China Time-honored Brand by the Ministry of Commerce, becoming the first batch of 430 China Time-honored Brands.

Today, Pixian Douban Association currently has 75 enterprise members. “Annual sales income of every enterprise is more than 10 million yuan and develops very quickly,” Yue Ping said.

“Lao Gan Ma” sells out of the province and the country. Since the appetizer “Fansaoguang” developed by Gaofuji flow freely in 2001, Xu Liang, the Chairman of Sichuan Pixian Douban Co., Ltd., has been thinking about the condiments of ready-made meals for several years: how to blend Pixian Douban into the ready-to-eat and tourism products?; how to make innovative derivative products around Douban?

In May 23, Huang Jiaquan, the technical director, put out four new products: mushrooms sauce, shrimp paste, chili sauce and Douban dips, in which the latter three still in the pilot stage has not yet available. “The development of derivative products can meet different needs, but also create a different brand value,” Huang Jiaquan takes an example, 900 grams of red oil Douban sells 11-12 yuan, and 200 grams of mushrooms sauce sells 12-14 yuan, so the added value of products differ greatly.

“Douban’s entering into the ready-to-eat areas needs to change and innovate, such as reducing salt”, Chen Zuming, a professor of Sichuan Tourism Institute said. He is quite experienced in the study of Douban derived products. Can the horsebean chili paste be made of barbecue flavor? Can Douban seasoning oil or fragrant pepper be developed?

Huang Jiaquan is in charge of the Douban Institute with R & D spending 2 million yuan each year, and he even want to blend Douban into Cantonese, Shandong cuisine, Huaiyang cuisine and even Western food?

In March 23, “Pixian Douban Feast” and “Pidu Sichuan Cuisine Cultural Tourism Line” show together at Sugar and Alcoholic Fair, attracting 30,000 visitors to the museum and more than 500 professional customers at home and abroad, and reaching 60 million yuan signed on the spot.

The Second Session of the Chinese agritainment Industry Development Forum was held in Chongqing in May 4 to 6. “Pixian Douban Feast” that produced by Pixian Food and Beverage Association was awarded as the “Chinese Local Characteristic Feast” by the China Hotel Association.