Yew Bio pharm Group Inc   (YEWB)
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Yew Bio pharm Group Inc Segments


Business Segments I. Quarter
(in millions $)
(Mar 31 2021)
(of total Revenues)
I. Quarter
(in millions $)
(Mar 31 2021)
(Profit Margin)
8.74 100 % 2.91 33.33 %

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Growth rates by Segment I. Quarter
Y/Y Revenue
(Mar 31 2021)
Q/Q Revenue
I. Quarter
Y/Y Income
(Mar 31 2021)
Q/Q Income
1208.91 % -15.62 % 146.02 % 192.37 %

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  Yew Bio Pharm Group Inc 's

Business Segments Description

Traditional Chinese Medicine

There is a long-established, scientifically recognized relationship between the Pacific yew, taxus brevifolia , and similar species of yew (including the Northeast yew), and certain cancer drugs, most notably paclitaxel, also known as taxol. Paclitaxel is a broad-spectrum mitotic inhibitor used in cancer chemotherapy. It was discovered in a U.S. National Cancer Institute program at the Research Triangle Institute in 1967 when Monroe E. Wall and Mansukh C. Wani isolated it from the bark of the Pacific yew tree and named it taxol. Taxol is found in the root, stem, leaf, seed and bark of the taxus family of trees, including the Pacific and Northeast yews. It was developed commercially by Bristol-Myers Squibb under the brand name Taxol®. The PRC State Food and Drug Administration, or the SFDA, approved a new drug certification for taxol in 1995.

The improvement on the extraction and isolation technology of the biological properties of taxol made it a breakthrough in the treatment of cancer in the 1990s, providing a non-intrusive alternative to the more radical techniques of radiotherapy and surgery. Taxol is used to treat patients with lung, ovarian, breast, head and neck cancer, and advanced forms of Kaposi’s sarcoma.

Taxol, derived from certain species of yew tree including the Northeast yew tree, is a taxane drug and mitotic inhibitor that is used to treat cancer. All cells grow by a process called mitosis (cell division). Taxol targets rapidly growing cancer cells, sticks to them while they are trying to divide and prevents them from completing the division process. Since the cancer cells cannot divide into new cells, they cannot grow and the cancer cannot metastasize. Taxol may suppress tumor growth through regulating microtubule stabilization, inducing apoptosis and adjusting immunologic mechanism. Taxol can promote the polymerization of microtubule and inhibit their degradation, through which taxol can block cell division in the G2/M stage and induce apoptosis of tumor cells.

Taxol is a clear, colorless fluid that is given intravenously as a chemotherapy injection or as an infusion pumped from a dose bag. Taxol can be administered as high-dose chemotherapy, once every two or three weeks, or in low doses on a weekly basis. In the treatment of certain soft tissue cancers, such as breast cancer, taxol is given for early stage and metastatic breast cancer after combination anthracycline and cytoxan therapy and is also given as neoadjuvant treatment to shrink a tumor before surgery. Taxol can also be used together with a drug called Cisplatin to treat advanced ovarian cancer and non-small cell lung cancer, or NSCLC. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved taxol as the primary and secondary treatment for NSCLC. There are other generally accepted protocols for the use of taxol as a cancer drug alone or in combination with other drugs depending upon the diagnosis, staging and type of cancer, as well as a patient’s medical history, tolerances and allergies, among other relevant factors.

The Chinese Herbal Medicine Standard (manual) of Heilogjiang Province (2011 version), edited by the HFDA, states that the Northeast yew has a secondary effect on treating cancer, meaning that while it has an impact on treating cancer, yew tree extract by itself (as distinguished from processed taxol) cannot be used as a stand-alone treatment of cancer. While the TCM raw material we sell contains taxol naturally, the companies to whom we sell such raw materials do not extract taxol from our TCM raw materials to produce pharmaceutical taxol.

Certain species of yew trees are the only natural source of taxol. Initially, taxol was extracted from the bark of the yew tree, but harvesting the bark usually kills the tree. Moreover, taxol is extracted from the bark of yew trees in extremely small amounts, often requiring the destruction of several yew trees to extract enough taxol to treat a single patient. Accordingly, taxol extracted from the yew is both very expensive and environmentally harmful. Because of environmental concerns about the adverse impact on forests in the Pacific Northwest in the United States, by the 1990s taxol ceased being derived from the bark of the Pacific yew. Alternative ways to develop taxol from renewable resources is ongoing. These include taxol-producing fungi from the yew tree and using other parts of the yew tree that may contain taxol.

We believe using yew trees that have been grown using our Asexual Reproduction Method significantly shortens the maturity cycle of naturally-grown yew trees and allows earlier commercialization of yew trees as a source of taxol. We further believes that using the branches and leaves of yew trees in large quantities, as we do, provides the key to solving the need for additional sources of taxol while not further endangering the PRC’s natural supply of yew trees, which themselves were over-forested in previous decades since the discovery of taxol.

The founder and President of our company, Zhiguo Wang, with the support of the Ministry of Forest and Science, and the Technology Department of Heilongjiang Province, successfully completed a project from 1984 to 1995 for asexual reproduction of the Northeast yew, and developed the first artificial cloned yew forest in the world. Tests conducted by the Ministry of Education’s Key Laboratory of Forest Plant Ecology in Northeast Forestry University have shown that the growing cycle of a cloned yew is significantly shorter than that of a natural yew and the concentration is taxol is higher. In 1995, this project received the Second Scientific and Technological Progress Award of Heilongjiang Province.

In December 2009, Yew Pharmaceutical received authorization from HFDA approving the sale of a yew-based TCM as a secondary treatment of cancer and certain other disorders, including uric disorders, certain liver diseases and menstrual discomfort. This TCM, sold under the brand name Zi Shan , has been approved to be sold under both prescription and over-the-counter drug categories. We also believe that Zi Shan may provide general beneficial effects on overall health. According to the Quintessence of Materia Medica, published in August 2006 by the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences - Institute of Medicinal Plants, the Northeast yew plays a role as a diuretic, detumescence and in restoring menstrual flow. The approval from HFDA allows Yew Pharmaceutical to sell Zi Shan throughout the PRC.

In November 2010, Yew Pharmaceutical applied to the SFDA to approve an upgrade of Zi Shan from provincial to national standard, which we believe will enhance its general market acceptance and therefore could create additional demand for the raw materials we sell to Yew Pharmaceutical. As of the date of this report, the application is pending.

We entered into a Cooperation and Development Agreement dated January 9, 2010, or the Development Agreement, with Yew Pharmaceutical, a related party, for the development, production and sale of yew-based TCM. Under the Development Agreement, we sell yew branches and leaves to Yew Pharmaceutical. Yew Pharmaceutical manufactures TCM at its own facilities in Harbin in accordance with the requirements of HFDA. Yew Pharmaceutical is also responsible for producing the finished product in accordance with good manufacturing practice, or GMP, requirements (in this regard, it received a GMP certificate in November 2009), and filing all applications with and obtaining all approvals from the HFDA.

Yew Pharmaceutical is the primary purchaser of the raw materials we sell in our TCM raw materials business. Pursuant to the Development Agreement, Yew Pharmaceutical pays us RMB1,000,000 per ton of raw material, whereas the current market price for such raw material is approximately RMB 1,100,000 per ton. The term of the Development Agreement is ten years, terminating on January 9, 2020. We began selling raw material in the form of branches and leaves of yew trees to Yew Pharmaceutical commencing in February 2010.

Yew Pharmaceutical is owned 95% by Heilongjiang Hongdoushan Ecology Forest Co., Ltd, a Chinese company, or HEFS, which itself is owned 63% by our founder, President and one of our directors, Zhiguo Wang, and 34% by his wife, Guifang Qi, who is also one of our directors. The remaining 5% is owned directly by Madame Qi. See Item 13, “Certain Relationships and Related Transactions, and Director Independence”.

Yew Pharmaceutical is the exclusive manufacturer of Zi Shan in the PRC. Zi Shan is sold in sachets in HFDA-approved dosages of two grams per sachet. It is consumed as a tea twice a day for therapeutic purposes or once a day for general health benefits. Approximately 30% of Zi Shan sales to date are in Heilongjiang Province and approximately 70% of such sales are from other provinces.

Starting in June 2010, other pharmaceutical companies started purchasing yew raw materials from us to manufacture and sell TCM similar to Zi Shan in other provinces.

Yew Trees

We have developed a detailed process of yew tree breeding. We start growing yew trees from seedlings that we purchase from various third parties, including certain affiliates. These seedlings come from naturally-grown mature yew trees. Because yew trees are protected, yew seedlings are scarce. Prices have been rising for yew seedlings by approximately 20% per year in recent years and we expect that to continue for at least the next few years. Our largest supplier of yew seedlings is a company that is directly and indirectly owned primarily by Mr. Wang and Madame Qi. See “Suppliers” below and Item 13, “Certain Relationships and Related Transactions, and Director Independence”.

We cultivate the yew seedlings at our nurseries for at least three to four years. Most of the land we lease from various parties for the growth of yew trees is location in and around Harbin. We have entered into several land use agreements with various parties, which provide the potential for us to grow a large number of yew trees on large areas of land over the next few decades, although we cannot currently estimate the number of trees we will grow or the total amount of land we will put into production over such period. Among these land use agreements, pursuant to the Joint Venture Agreement, we have been granted permission to grow yew trees on up to 1,000,000 mu (approximately 166,667 acres) and to share profits 80% to the Company and 20% to the Wuchang Forestry Bureau. In addition, we have been provided two areas to use as nurseries for the cultivation of yew seedlings in the aggregate amount of 1,400 mu (approximately 233 acres). See Item 2, “Properties”.

When the yew trees are mature enough for transplanting, we prepare survey and design specifications for an afforestation plan. Once this has been prepared and approved, we clean and divide the reproducing area, clearing brushwood and weeds, and mark off breeding areas of between five and eight meters in width and less than one meter in length. We typically plant stock in the spring, when the defrosted soil is a depth of at least 15 centimeters.

The cut materials are then dried for a period of 18-20 hours at a temperature of between 55°C and 60°C, with the temperature monitored every three hours. After the drying process, the moisture content of the plant material should not exceed 8.0%. We then use a crusher to grind the plant material into a powder. The powder is mixed before being put into sealed plastic bags. The sealed plastic bags are put into outer shipping material and the package undergoes a final inspection before being ready for shipment.

By using our patented Asexual Reproduction Method, developed by our founder and President, Zhiguo Wang, we are able to accelerate the commercial viability of a yew tree, so that it is able to be used for commercialization starting in approximately three years, compared to more than 50 years for naturally grown yew trees. For example, the branches and leaves from an accelerated growth yew tree can be used in the production of TCM in three to five years, and a cutting from an accelerated growth yew tree will develop into a small yew tree that can be sold as a potted tree starting in approximately three years. We are authorized sell cuttings of cloned yew trees without a government permit.

We sell yew trees primarily to state-owned enterprises and private businesses for reforestation in Heilongjiang Province and Jilin Province, in Northeast China. Historically, we have sold the majority of our yew trees to a small number of larger customers. However, even though we have a number of long-term customers, we do not enter into long-term agreements for the sale of our yew trees. Because our profit margin is smaller for larger customers due to volume price discounts, we are making efforts to increase sales to smaller customers. Our business relating to the sale of yew trees is seasonal. March to May, November and December are our strongest months.

After a period of three-to-seven years under cultivation, we also transplant some yew trees into decorative ceramic pots and sell these to retail customers for display in homes and offices. The Chinese people believe that in addition to its aesthetic qualities, yew trees help cleanse the air and reduce pollution. Accordingly, yew trees are purchased by individuals for personal use in their home or office and are often given as gifts. Yew trees can be found at landmarks around the world, including the White House and Lincoln Memorial.

We purchase high quality ceramic pots from third parties into which the yew trees are transplanted. We believe that there is a readily available supply of high-quality ceramic pots at relatively low and stable prices.

Because of the limited supply of yew trees and restrictions on the commercial use of yew trees, combined with the high quality of the ceramic pots we purchase from third-party sources, primarily in South China, used for the transplanted trees, the potted yew trees that we sell are highly prized and we charge premium retail prices by Chinese standards. Retail prices of potted yew trees vary based on the age, shape and other desirable qualities of the tree, and range from approximately RMB 280 to approximately RMB 3,080.

In connection with our entering into a land use agreement in July 2012, or the Fuye Field Agreement, we acquired more than 80,000 trees - which are not yew trees - located on that property. These trees consist of approximately 20,000 larix, 56,700 spruce and 3,700 poplar trees. Larix trees are used primarily in landscaping and we currently anticipate that we will begin selling larix trees to customers during 2013. Spruce and poplar trees are used primarily as building materials and we currently anticipate that we will begin selling these trees to customers in later periods, when these trees reach maturity in several years.


Yew wood is of medium strength, making it possible to fashion products from the yew tree without undue effort or expense requiring special equipment. To create our current inventory of award-winning handicrafts, including furniture, historically we employed between 15 and 20 artisans from throughout the PRC, principally from Fujian Province and Jiangxi Province in southern China, annually from summer through late fall, to manufacture handicrafts made from yew timber at our production facility near Harbin. Since we currently have an adequate inventory of handicrafts, we now manufacture additional handicrafts only when orders are placed.

We begin the process of manufacturing handicrafts by selecting yew timber with greater variation in molding, which is indicative of a more attractive grain to the wood. The selected timber is then placed in a drying chamber and steam is injected to accelerate water evaporation until moisture content is only 3%. Depending upon the size and thickness of the timber, this process can take as long as one week.

The process of designing the item to be created begins with rough basing, based on geometrical form to summarize the overall artistic idea. During the entire process of carving the timber it is important to minimize knife scarring. Our crafted pieces typically go through a dying process; this not only can address certain small imperfections in the wood but is also done to aesthetically enhance the finished piece. After waiting at least twelve hours following dyeing, the carved item is then polished with sandpapers of different roughness and finally finishing cloths.

All of our products are hand-made, using yew tree timber of different maturities. Much of the furniture that we produce is reproductions of popular Ming and Qing Dynasty styles. We have acquired an inventory of yew timber from various parties over a number of years and have an adequate supply on hand for approximately five more years’ worth of production. Because of the scarcity of yew timber needed to produce handicrafts, it is very expensive to acquire new inventory of yew timber and supplies are extremely limited, if available at all. Accordingly, we plan to reduce and eventually eliminate our handicraft segment over the next several years.

Pursuant to the Department of Forestry of Heilongjiang Province (2003) Document No.188, issued by Department of Forestry of Heilongjiang Province on October 25, 2003, we have been granted rights to develop comprehensively and use Northeast yew resources. We believe that we are one of only a few companies in the PRC to have received approval for the manufacture of items made from yew timber.

Because of the limited supply of yew timber and restrictions on the commercial use of yew trees, combined with the high quality of artisans we employ, the handicrafts and furniture we manufacture are highly prized and we charge premium retail prices to our customers. Examples of retail prices for some of our products are as follows:

a pair of yew chopsticks sells for approximately RMB198;

a fountain pen sells for approximately RMB2,480;

sculptures can sell for tens of thousands of RMB; and

large pieces of furniture can sell for more than RMB100,000.

Wood Ear Mushroom

Wood ear mushroom grows in the deep forests throughout Asia, Europe and the United States. Though highly valued for its nutritional benefits in Asian regions, this crunchy, dark brown colored, and ear shape little super food is rarely sought after by its western counterparts. Wood ear mushroom contains high levels of polysaccharides, dietary fiber, protein, vitamins, and 20 times more iron than spinach, making it the new undisputed king vegetable. In addition, with rising concerns of heart health related diseases, researches have shown that antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents contained in wood ear mushroom can be an excellent alternative to traditional supplements.

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