World

Despite dry spell, North Korean farmers expect good vegetable harvest next month

  • A farmer carries a fully grown cabbage after plucking it out from the main crop which will be harvested early next month, and used to make Kimchi, Friday, Oct. 24, 2014 at the Chilgol vegetable farm on the outskirts of Pyongyang, North Korea. It looks like the residents of Pyongyang won’t be lacking for cabbage and vegetables come next month, when the crops will be harvested. Providing enough food to feed the nation is always a struggle for North Korea, which suffered a near cataclysmic famine in the 1990s but has since managed to increase its agricultural production to what international organizations believe is closer to the self-sufficiency level than the country has seen in years. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)

    A farmer carries a fully grown cabbage after plucking it out from the main crop which will be harvested early next month, and used to make Kimchi, Friday, Oct. 24, 2014 at the Chilgol vegetable farm on the outskirts of Pyongyang, North Korea. It looks like the residents of Pyongyang won’t be lacking for cabbage and vegetables come next month, when the crops will be harvested. Providing enough food to feed the nation is always a struggle for North Korea, which suffered a near cataclysmic famine in the 1990s but has since managed to increase its agricultural production to what international organizations believe is closer to the self-sufficiency level than the country has seen in years. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)  (The Associated Press)

  • Farmers refill their tanks with fertilizer to be sprayed on cabbage crops which will be harvested early next month and used to make Kimchi at the Chilgol vegetable farm on the outskirts of Pyongyang, North Korea, Friday, Oct. 24, 2014. It looks like the residents of Pyongyang won’t be lacking for cabbage and vegetables come next month, when the crops will be harvested. Providing enough food to feed the nation is always a struggle for North Korea, which suffered a near cataclysmic famine in the 1990s but has since managed to increase its agricultural production to what international organizations believe is closer to the self-sufficiency level than the country has seen in years. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)

    Farmers refill their tanks with fertilizer to be sprayed on cabbage crops which will be harvested early next month and used to make Kimchi at the Chilgol vegetable farm on the outskirts of Pyongyang, North Korea, Friday, Oct. 24, 2014. It looks like the residents of Pyongyang won’t be lacking for cabbage and vegetables come next month, when the crops will be harvested. Providing enough food to feed the nation is always a struggle for North Korea, which suffered a near cataclysmic famine in the 1990s but has since managed to increase its agricultural production to what international organizations believe is closer to the self-sufficiency level than the country has seen in years. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)  (The Associated Press)

  • Farmers spray fertilizer on cabbage crops which will be harvested early next month and used mainly to make Kimchi at the Chilgol vegetable farm on the outskirts of Pyongyang, North Korea, Friday, Oct. 24, 2014. It looks like the residents of Pyongyang won’t be lacking for cabbage and vegetables come next month, when the crops will be harvested. Providing enough food to feed the nation is always a struggle for North Korea, which suffered a near cataclysmic famine in the 1990s but has since managed to increase its agricultural production to what international organizations believe is closer to the self-sufficiency level than the country has seen in years. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)

    Farmers spray fertilizer on cabbage crops which will be harvested early next month and used mainly to make Kimchi at the Chilgol vegetable farm on the outskirts of Pyongyang, North Korea, Friday, Oct. 24, 2014. It looks like the residents of Pyongyang won’t be lacking for cabbage and vegetables come next month, when the crops will be harvested. Providing enough food to feed the nation is always a struggle for North Korea, which suffered a near cataclysmic famine in the 1990s but has since managed to increase its agricultural production to what international organizations believe is closer to the self-sufficiency level than the country has seen in years. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)  (The Associated Press)

Providing enough food to feed the nation is always a struggle for North Korea. But it looks like the residents of Pyongyang won't be lacking for cabbage and vegetables come next month, when the crops will be harvested.

The nation, which suffered a near cataclysmic famine in the 1990s, has since managed to increase its agricultural production to what international organizations believe is closer to the self-sufficiency level than the country has seen in years.

Feeding Pyongyang, the nation's showcase capital and the home of its most privileged citizens, is always a priority.

Since last year, farmers at the Chilgol Vegetable Farm on the outskirts of the city have been using a new mix of fertilizer, said Won Ryong Chon, the cooperative's vice chairman.

He said the cabbage — used to make kimchi, the ever-present Korean condiment — will be harvested early next month.