Hậu Giang links up agricultural stakeholders to improve quality, value

May 04, 2023 - 10:00
Hậu Giang Province is establishing linkages between farmers, co-operatives and companies to ensure sustainable development of agriculture.
Farmers harvest the 2022-23 winter-spring rice in Hậu Giang Province’s Vị Thuỷ District. — VNA/VNS Photo Hồng Thái

HẬU GIANG — Hậu Giang Province is establishing linkages between farmers, co-operatives and companies to ensure sustainable development of agriculture.

It is meant to guarantee outlets for produce and increase incomes for farmers and provide high-quality produce to companies, according to the local Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.

The Cửu Long (Mekong) Delta province has around 80,000ha of rice, 45,000ha of fruits and 2,156ha of aquaculture.

But most farmers still sell their produce through traders because of the lack of linkages between agricultural co-operatives and companies, according to the department.

The province has nearly 220 agricultural co-operatives.

Speaking at a seminar held in Hậu Giang, Ngô Minh Long, director of the department, said the province wants more companies linking up with co-operatives to develop agriculture.

His department would help companies tie up with co-operatives to cultivate, process, preserve, and sell agricultural products, he said.

Nguyễn Ngọc Thuý, general director of the NNT International Import Export Trading Company Limited in HCM City, said the province has many high-quality agricultural items but their value is not high in the absence of brand names, attractive packaging or design.

It is necessary to develop packaging and design, build brand names, ensure origin traceability, and create production codes for farming areas to increase value, she said.

Nguyễn Văn Thích, deputy director of the Tân Long Agricultural Co-operative in Vị Thuỷ District, said his co-operative’s clean rice has been recognised as a four-star product under the country’s “One Commune-One Product” programme.

The co-operative has linkages with companies to grow rice, but they are crop-based and not permanent, he said.

It hopes to develop permanent linkages with companies and that they would invest in it and its farmers’ lands to sustainably develop agriculture, he said.

The co-operative now grows rice to semi-organic farming standards but aims to upgrade to organic standards, he added.

The province encourages farmers to adopt organic, Vietnamese and global good agricultural practices (VietGAP and GlobalGAP) and other high quality standards to improve quality and value.

It has more than 2,580ha planted to VietGAP and GlobalGAP standards and 1,860ha with production codes to enable exports.

It has eight companies, 14 co-operatives and 7,550 households co-operating in growing rice on an area of 8,543ha and harvesting 42,506 tonnes a year.

For fruit cultivation, four companies have tied up with five co-operatives and 986 households with 1,283ha and annually producing 8,209 tonnes.

The province encourages companies to invest in large-scale fields, value chains and brand names.

It showcases local agricultural products and trains farmers in promoting their produce on e-commerce platforms. VNS