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State to direct more investment into livestock breeds

Update: January, 14/2012 - 09:19

HCM CITY — State investment in the husbandry sector would, beginning this year, focus on raising livestock breeds, building slaughterhouses and meat processing facilities, a senior official has said.

Nguyen Thanh Son, deputy head of the Livestock Breeding Department under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, also said State investment would be reduced for non-production infrastructure of projects slow to generate profits.

Meanwhile, the ministry would encourage increased investment of official development assistance (ODA) and foreign direct investment (FDI) funds in the animal husbandry sector. It would also promote the public-private partnership investment model, Son said.

The country's agriculture sector in general and the husbandry sector in particular still attracted relatively low investment compared to other sectors in the country, he said.

In the last two decades (1990-2010), the agriculture and rural development sector only attracted 738 foreign investment projects, not including food processing projects, according to the Foreign Investment Department under the Ministry of Planning and Investment.

The 738 projects had a total registered capital of US$4.3 billion, accounting for only 2.3 per cent of the country's total registered investment capital in the same period.

Livestock breeds were a key element in the husbandry sector's productivity and effectiveness so their development should be given an investment priority, experts say.

Experts have predicted that industrially farmed chicken would face fierce competition from imports in the coming years so the husbandry sector needed to switch to producing high-quality fowl at home.

The sector should increase the production of speciality chicken and coloured-feather chicken while reducing that of white-feather industrially farmed chicken.

Major shift

Under the country's husbandry development plan, the ministry plans to shift livestock farming from small-scale households to industrial farms.

It will continue encouraging the development of husbandry associations, husbandry co-operatives and husbandry service associations in the coming years.

The husbandry associations, co-operatives and farms will be provided with favourable conditions to access loans and find markets at home and abroad.

The process of industrialisation and urbanisation is happening rapidly in delta areas, so in the long term, livestock farms should be moved to midland and mountainous areas.

Husbandry farms will be required to move out of residential areas and invest in waste treatment facilities to protect the environment.

Over the past five years, the number of husbandry farms has increased by 32 per cent to 23,558 farms, according to the Livestock Breeding Department.

In the same period, nearly 1.7 million households, equalling 16.9 per cent of the country's total livestock breeding households, have abandoned the profession and this number will continue to increase.

Households now account for about 65 per cent of the pigs, 70 per cent of the chicken and 90 per cent of the buffalos and cows raised in the country. — VNS

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