On May 30, 2007 Kim Jong Il visited the Kanggye Winery.
An official of the winery guided him first to the wine cellar and told him that they housed an assortment of liquor the factory had produced since 1958.
The General said: 1958 may be the year when President Kim Il Sung visited this factory for the first time. I remember the day when I was here with him. Nearly 50 years has passed by, and the large amount of liquor with a half-a-century-long history should be kept in good condition.
Suddenly he changed the subject: In old times Kanggye was famous for beauties, and there were many entertainment girls here. At that time people called the head of the province provincial governor, but now chief secretary of the provincial Party committee. The governor indulged himself with entertainment girls, and the chief secretary may abandon himself to drinking, feeling reluctant to relinquish his position because of this treasure trove.
This joke raised a big laugh.
The official of the factory lost no time in trying to speak in defence of the chief secretary, saying that he was teetotal.
Nodding, the General laughed louder.
Then the official guided him around the production lines.
He said, “Dear General, our factory produces hundreds of tons of wine on every major holiday and supplies it in a planned way to the workers of the machine factories in the province and the citizens in Kanggye. They are all happy with it.”
And the senior official of the provincial Party committee added that the workers were provided with liquor, chicken and eggs, and they pledged to live up to the General’s affection.
Kim Jong Il said with a gleam of amusement:
“We must spare nothing for the sake of the workers at the machine factories. I am so sorry for not supplying anything more to them. I am very glad to hear that the workers at the Kanggye Winery turn out a large amount of vintage wine and send it to the machine factories on a regular basis. I am satisfied with this.”
Learning that all the equipment in the supplemented production lines were manufactured in the province, he said: It is laudable that the factory has boosted production by introducing modern equipment that were made in the province. Through a vigorous mass campaign for technological innovation it has upgraded its equipment and established a production system fed by locally-available raw materials. Thus it has ensured cost-effectiveness in business operation. This experience proves that science and technology is the key to increased production.