On July 10, 2020, the workshop on connecting provincial agencies and businesses to promote the development of agricultural product processing and agricultural markets was held in Da Lat city, Lam Dong province, Vietnam.
Mr. Nguyen Quoc Toan, Director of Agricultural Products Processing and Development Department (Agrotrade), Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) and Dr. Nguyen Van Son, Director of the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD), co-chaired the workshop with the participation of representatives from different departments of Agrotrade, representatives of DARD of 18 provinces in the Central and Central Highlands, several companies and organizations operating in agriculture and trade
Dr. Nguyen Van Son, Director of DARD Lam Dong presented at the workshop
Representatives from Agrotrade presented strengths and difficulties of Vietnam's agricultural production and processing industry as well as the orientation for domestic and international market consumption and development. According to Agrotrade, Vietnam has recently negotiated and signed many economic agreements and continued to deploy 16 free trade agreements (FTAs) for different international markets. The results open up opportunities for Vietnamese agricultural products to penetrate further to some demanding markets such as the US, Japan and European countries.
Solutions to develop agricultural processing industry
In the Central and Central Highlands region, there are currently about 1,400 establishments for processing of agro-forestry and aquatic products, with an estimated value of 25% of the whole country. In 2019, the export value of agricultural products nationwide reached over 41 billion USD; of which, the Central and Central Highlands accounted for 30%. However, the agricultural product processing industry in the Central and Central Highlands is still limited, the competitiveness of products in this region is not high due to uneven quality and low level of diversification. In addition, processing capacity is low, the size of enterprises is small, not meeting market requirements.
Workshop delegates also discussed solutions to develop agricultural processing industry in the Central and Central Highlands regions in the coming time, including orientation for market development (focusing on domestic market, looking for new potential markets, reducing the dependence on the Chinese market); review land use planning, crop and livestock production structure. At the same time, localities need to develop clusters of production - processing and consumption of agricultural products based on local advantages such as area of industrial crops in the North Central and Central Highlands provinces and regions for growing vegetables and fruit trees in the Central Highlands provinces. In addition, it is necessary to continue encouraging and supporting enterprises to invest in modern technology, deep processing, creating high added value products which can meet the diverse needs of the market and customers.
4P approach in value chain development of IKI BMU funded Café REDD project
The Café REDD project had a presentation at the workshop about the inclusive value chain development activities in Lac Duong district, Lam Dong province.
Within the framework of the Café REDD project, SNV supports and facilitates the development of inclusive value chains where coffee processing enterprises have been connected with local producers and authorities in a Public-Private-Producer Partnership (4P). The project provides multi-faceted support for farmers for seedlings, fertilizers, capacity building as well as establishing and organizing farmer groups to improve production efficiency and product quality in a sustainable manner that is free of deforestation and forest degradation. The farmer groups are established organisation for businesses to connect, support and buy farmers' agricultural products with premium prices.
The project also supports companies in marketing activities, introduction and promoting of high quality coffee brand of Lac Duong. Currently, coffee companies collaborating in the coffee chains vary from local-based enteprises such as K'Ho, Chappi Mountains Coffee, Yumonang, the Married Beans to companies operating in other areas such as Tam Trinh, Acom or Robame. Particularly, the Café REDD project is supporting the implementation of digital tracebility systems for coffee deploying ICT and digital technologies such as using drones in farm mapping, Terra-I for near-real time forest monitoring progress and QR code stamps on coffee products.
Other value chains, such as the artichoke chain linked to Ladophar company, persimmon or macadamia chains will soon be established. The local government, acting as an actor of the chain, also provides strong support for the project implementation, company’s operating activities as well as for local farmers via trainings, financial support and co-organising many activities with the project. Hopefully, under this 4P collaboration, all parties will achieve their individual goals as well as the common goals of enhancing coffee production and quality, protecting the environment, reducing the impact of climate change and improving the income of rural farmers.
Representative of Agrotrade presented at the workshop
Ms. Le Thi Thu Huong, Inclusive Agribusiness and Value Chain Advisor of Café-REDD project presented at the workshop