After Mao Zedong and the communist party took control over china in 1949, he decided to boost production by having citizens work in communes and in factories
Mao Zedong's goal was to catch up to Britain's production levels as soon as possible, and he changed his plan from 15 years to one year before china would be producing more. This lead to rushed tactics and poor quality materials, along with stressed workers trying to meet huge quotas
Factory workers in urban areas would make steel and other modern goods to be exported. They ate and lived off the food sent from the farms and they would send materials back to the farms to use.
Workers on new communes in the countryside would farm and send their crops to the urban cities and they would be exported to other countries. They no longer farmed for themselves