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VietNamNews

Disease free zones a must for livestock sector development

Update: May, 25/2015 - 11:26
As many as 289 poultry farms and 275 pig-rearing farms in five provinces were recognised as disease free after a year of participating in the pilot project. — File Photo

HA NOI (VNS) — As Viet Nam revs up for the Tran Pacific Partnership and several other bilateral and multilateral trade agreements, industries hoping to take advantage of the export opportunities are under pressure to get up to standard.

That means that local animal husbandry industries need to increase efficiency and quality if they are to compete with new imports or build export markets, Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Vu Van Tam said.

At a meeting held on Friday to discuss implementation of a pilot project to build disease-free cattle and poultry zones, Tam called for more co-operation between owners of disease free farms and businesses who process export products.

"The participation of businesses in disease free zones is necessary and they will be supported with preferential policies," Tam said, adding that disease-free zones would eventually expand to other regions in the near future.

Setting up a no-pandemic zone that meets the demands of World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) and importer markets is a must, he said.

The necessity is clear; estimations put livestock production, one of the fastest growing sub-sectors in agriculture, at 42 per cent of the agricultural contribution to the GDP in 2020.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) established a steering committee to manage the development and production of vaccines for cattle and poultry. Their efforts will focus on researching and producing vaccines for bird flu, foot and mouth disease and blue ear pig diseases, Tam said.

MARD will also work with international organisations such as Food and Agriculture Organisation, OIE and the World Heath Organisation in supervising the movements and development of the viruses while vaccine efforts are underway.

As many as 289 poultry farms and 275 pig-rearing farms in five provinces were recognised as disease free after a year of participating in the pilot project.

Participants at the meeting said the project, besides enhancing localities' disease prevention efforts, would improve conditions for product output and export competitiveness.

Nguyen Van May, head of Tay Ninh Province's veterinary station, said that a statistical survey of all the cattle and poultry in the area is necessary in order to set up a disease free zone.

Other participants suggested that special attention be paid to households because disease-free zones also require that households pass muster.

The pilot project for the 2014-18 period was approved by MARD in September of last year and will annually cost VND73.5 billion (US$3.3 million) . — VNS

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