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Village in E China's Shandong thrives on Spring Festival couplets industry

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With the Spring Festival just around the corner, a village in east China's Shandong Province known for the Spring Festival couplets industry is buzzing with excitement these days.

Donglijia village, Xiazhuang township, Gaomi city in Shandong is dubbed as "China's couplets industry base," with over 60 per cent of the households engaged in couplet processing and related sectors. Every year before the Spring Festival, the streets of the village are filled with various Spring Festival decorations for sale such as couplets written on red paper and New Year paintings, exuding a joyful and festive atmosphere.

Local villager Li Zhaocheng has been working in this industry for more than four decades. "My factory has developed dozens of products with the element of the dragon for the upcoming Year of the Dragon, which sell well. Products made of flocking material are also popular," the 67-year-old said. Li added that there are now more choices of materials, printing inks, and fonts for Spring Festival couplets.

Shandong Dongmo Culture Co., Ltd. in the village has 12 couplets production lines operating at full capacity, with finished products ready for shipment. Wang Gang, an executive of the company, said that the company designed over 100 dragon-themed patterns, and received orders from more than 10 provinces and cities across the country.

The company creates nearly 200 work opportunities for local people, and expands the income for each household by an average of more than 30,000 yuan ($4,170).

Together with Donglijia village, more than 10 surrounding villages have also developed the industry. The local government has fostered a mode combining leading enterprises, cooperatives and farmers, selling the products through offline and online channels to more than 20 provinces and cities in China.

Xiazhuang township alone produces nearly 8,000 tonnes of couplets and relevant products a year worth nearly 100 million yuan, making it a crucial industry for local farmers.

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