The majority of commercially produced goji comes from Ningxia and Xinjiang in Northwestern China, where they are grown on plantations totaling 200,000 acres.[self-published source] In Zhongning County, Ningxia, wolfberry plantations typically range between 40 and 400 hectares (100–1000 acres or 500–6000 mu) in area. As of 2005, over 10 million mu have been planted with goji in Ningxia.
Ningxia goji has been cultivated along the fertile floodplains of the Yellow River for more than 700 years and have earned a reputation throughout Asia for premium quality sometimes described commercially as "red diamonds". Government releases of annual wolfberry production, premium fruit grades, and export are based on yields from Ningxia, the region recognized with—
the largest annual harvest in China, accounting for 45% of the nation's total yield of wolfberries (50,000 tons, 2013);
formation of an industrial association of growers, processors, marketers, and scholars of wolfberry cultivation to promote the berry's commercial and export potential;
the nation's only source of superior grade wolfberries used by practitioners of traditional Chinese medicine
Commercial volumes of wolfberries also grow in the Chinese regions of Inner Mongolia, Qinghai, Gansu, Shaanxi, Shanxi, and Hebei. When ripe, the oblong, red berries[self-published source] are tender and must be picked carefully or shaken from the vine into trays to avoid spoiling. The fruits are preserved by drying them in full sun on open trays or by mechanical dehydration employing a progressively increasing series of heat exposure over 48 hours.
Wolfberries are celebrated each August in Ningxia with an annual festival coinciding with the berry harvest. Originally held in Ningxia's capital, Yinchuan, the festival has been based since 2000 in Zhongning County, an important center of wolfberry cultivation for the region. As Ningxia's borders merge with three deserts, wolfberries are also planted to control erosion and reclaim irrigable soils from desertification.
China, the main supplier of wolfberry products in the world, had total exports generating US$120 million in 2004. This production derived from 82,000 hectare farmed nationwide, yielding 95,000 tons of wolfberries, which has increased from larger acreages cultivated in recent years.][self-published source]