Wan Nian (or 10 thousand years) located in Jiangxi province is believed to be the birthplace of world rice culture. US and Chinese archeologists discovered evidence of rice culture in the Fairy Cave dating back 12,000 years ago, about 5,000 years earlier than the historic rice culture discovered in He Mudu. In the site was also evidence of pottery making dating back 17,000 years, early use of symbols and commercial activities.
Wan Nian has a history of 500 years and in celebration of this anniversary the county organized a rice symposium with a fitting theme “Green, Safe and Sustainable Development of Rice Industry”. Symposium speakers included Professor Yuan Longping, 2004 World Food Prize laureate and fellow of the US National Academy of Science, Drs Fang Ming Xie and K.L. Heong from IRRI. Dr Heong introduced the use of ecological engineering methods to increase local biodiversity, ecosystem services and reducing insecticides, citing examples from Vietnam, Jin Hua and San Men.
In Heqiao Village in Wannian county is a Globally Important Agricultural Heritage System (GIAHS) supported by FAO. In the site is in situ conservation of land race rice varieties grown around 420 AD – 589 AD called “Wuyuanzao” now commonly known as “Manggu”.