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The Chinese Village Zisiqiao plays host to a plethora of snake breeds including cobras, vipers and pythons. The reason for these scaly creatures’ prominence in the village you ask? The snakes play an integral role in the realm of food and medicine. The snakes possess medicinal assets that are highly distinguished in the Chinese culture. The properties of the snake are generally consumed as either drink or soup by people and are said to improve individual immunity.
These significant functions have allowed for an extremely profitable business to arise in this province tucked in China’s Eastern Zhejiang. A staggering profit continues to generate by this ample snake breeding- a profit soaring in the millions. The business undoubtedly proves to be an exceptional means of revenue for the village that would depend only on farming if left without the snake breeding business.
This profitable method of snake breeding was primarily realized in 1985 when Yang Hongchang, a 60 year old farmer began to dabble in the field. Within a few years Hongchang acquired a hefty profit due to the snake breeding. This, in turn, prompted other villagers to venture into this serpent sphere.
Hongchang has expanded this profitable scheme into an empire that has cascaded into the creation of a variety of snake products. Hongchang has expressed that “the company researches on the snakes and they hand them over to the farms for breeding. They said this model was working very well” (Reuters). The breeder also revealed that this model in particular has gained wide support across the province and county due to the method’s accommodating nature. Above all the snake method of the village has been a corporation that works alongside the farming communities of the village.
Immense research has been increasingly placed into the domain of snake breeding; no longer is it simply a male matched with a female for basic breeding but now the villages more fastidious research is uncovering what makes for the more efficient breeding outcomes.
With this extra efficient manner of approaching the world of snake breeding, an increasing demand for snake products is brimming at the forefront of minds; medical facilities to governmental groups are taking an interest.
The demand extends to countries such as Germany, Japan and even the United States. Gao Chenchang store manager of the Hangzhou Woai Company cites that “each part of the snake is treasured”. Consider that there are many people in China that “like to eat snakes”- the snake breeding business surely has planted a seed for a snake culture to robustly sprout in the region (Reuters).
Whether being used for their healing properties or ability to pacify a ravenous stomach, snakes have provided China with a profitable, unique and equally intriguing culture.
Evidently, China has achieved the task of looking past the infamous venom of the snake and uncovering their worthwhile treasures.