Viet Nam News
HCM CITY — Farmers in the Mekong Delta province of Bạc Liêu have had bumper harvests of paddy rice and shrimp with higher profits and yields than in previous years.
Farmers who take part in the rice/shrimp rotation model on the same field have also seen fewer outbreaks of disease.
Lương Ngọc Lân, head of the province’s Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, said that the 2016-17 rice/shrimp rotation crop covered more than 31,000 ha, an increase of more than 10,000 ha compared to the last crop.
The harvest, which ends in mid-February, is expected to bring profits of VNĐ50 million (US$2,202) per ha, he added.
The rice/shrimp rotation model uses no chemicals or fertilisers for paddy rice, while shrimp are not fed, which saves costs.
Lân said that safe and clean shrimp and rice would sell easily as they are favoured by customers
Mai Văn Thiết of the province’s Hồng Dân District, who has expanded his field to two hectares, said that he had received training in modern cultivation techniques, including shrimp breeding and selection of seeds for paddy rice.
Irrigation systems have also been built in the fields.
Last year, the result was a good harvest, leading to profit of more than VNĐ250 million ($11,013) from two crops of shrimp and one for paddy rice, Thiết said.
Tăng Văn Định of the province’s Phước Long District , who had a bumper harvest of shrimp, operates a farm that covers more than one hectare, generating profit of more than VNĐ20 million ($879).
Phạm Thanh Hải, chairman of Phước Long District People’s Committee, said his district had more than 9,000 hectares for rotating rice-shrimp, an increase of more than 2,000 ha compared to the last crop.
Shrimp production was nearly 0.2 tonne per ha and nearly five tonnes per ha for paddy rice, he said.
He expects profit of more than VNĐ50 million per hectare for shrimp and paddy rice, double compared to rice monoculture in the past.
By 2020, the province aims to expand rice-shrimp farming to 40,000 ha, mostly in Hồng Dân and Phước Long districts and Giá Rai Town. —VNS