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Posts Tagged ‘farmers’

Toxic pesticides used by vegetable farmers

In Uncategorized on January 8, 2011 at 4:04 am

Verdant veggies  farms in an outskirt district in Hanoi. However, many containers of pesticides found discarded in fields, canals, ditches and ponds in the vicinities of farms.( Photo: SGGP)

Bitter cold weather in northern parts of the country has badly affected agricultural produce, leading to a shortage of supply of fresh vegetables as demand increases for the oncoming Tet holiday season (Lunar New Year). 


This has led some farmers to take advantage of the situation and toxic stimulants and pesticides are being added to increase farm produce, regardless of their affect on the health of people.


Mindless of the weather, many farmers in the outskirts of Hanoi in areas like Tay Tuu, La Ca, La Tinh, Thinh Liet, and Van Canh seemed to use excessive pesticides.


Many containers of pesticides with Vietnamese and Chinese labels were found discarded in fields, canals, ditches and ponds in the vicinities of farms.


Ms. Hanh in Tu Liem district said that farmers used artificial growth stimulants made in China for insect control, as insects devastated crops and along with this they used nitrate fertilizer to grow longer leaves in veggies as well as speed up quick growth. This resulted in veggies growing within a short time and giving an artificial and lush appearance.


Hanh revealed that her colleagues used excessive pesticide to grow swamp morning-glory, which was once an exclusive summer seasonal vegetable but now farmers grew it round the year.


Normally it takes 15-20 days to harvest swamp morning-glory but farmers now harvest the veggie in just a few days by spraying fertilizers and stimulants every two or three days. 

A kind of artificial growth stimulant farmers usually spray in their vegetable fields (photo: SGGP)

Farmers used these artificial growth stimulants from China instead of the permitted ones allowed on the list issued by agriculture authorities because they were so much cheaper. Farmers can net more profit by growing swamp morning-glory than paddy (rice).


Ms. Hoat, a farmer in La Ca village which is famous for growing this special vegetable believes farmers began planting swamp morning-glory instead of  rice five years ago because they could earn more money.


She also revealed a separate piece of land where she grew veggies for her family on which she did not spray pesticide or growth stimulants.


The government certainly needs to step up action to stop such rampant use of pesticides and growth stimulants. People face a health risk and even though farmers understand the consequences of excess use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides in vegetable they continue to be lured by enormous profits.

Source: SGGP

US to help Vietnamese farmers in growing subsidiary crops

In Uncategorized on January 8, 2011 at 4:03 am

The US Embassy has said that the US Agency for International Development (USAID) will grant US$500,000 for implementing a cooperative program on the growing of subsidiary crops in both Vietnam and Cambodia.

A research group from California University in coordination with Hanoi University of Agriculture, and the Ho Chi Minh City University of Agriculture and Forestry will conduct the program.


The program will run until 2013 and will help farmers improve the growing of subsidiary crops. The program will also assist in conducting market research and post-harvest activities in both Vietnam and Cambodia.

Farmers will be involved in courses about production procedures, in order to limit post-harvest losses. The training course will also help improve food and hygiene safety, increase market access, and increase farmers’ income.

The program is part of five projects, funded by USAID in 15 developing countries, aiming to help develop a new method of growing subsidiary crops, which is based on research activities.

Source: SGGP

Tra fish farmers earn big bucks with exporters

In Uncategorized on December 18, 2010 at 9:26 am

While most fish farmers in the Mekong Delta are anxious about World Wildlife Fund putting Vietnam’s tra fish on “Don’t buy” list, those in Dong Thap Province’s Hong Ngu District still enjoyed a booming yield thanks to the cooperative model.

(Photo: http://www.hungvuongpanga.com)

“I have just harvested 1,000 tons of small fishes weighted 750-850 gram per one and earned the highest-ever net profit of more than VND3 billion (US$150,000) from selling to the seafood exporter Bianfishco at the price of VND23,000 per kilogram,” said farmer Ho Thi Kim Tho of Hong Ngu District.


Tho said she made a big profit of more than VND8 billion from nearly 3,000 tons of tra fishes so far this year as local exporters bought at high prices.


“I earned more than VND5 billion from selling 2,000 tons of fishes to Bianfishco. This is the amount that I’ve dared not to dream of before,” Nam Phuc, another farmer in the district, said.


Farmers said the cooperation with local seafood exporters helped them made good profits this year. “Since we cooperated with seafood firms, we’ve not been worried about finding buyers, while they helped us to improve our breeding methods,” said a fish farmer in Hong Ngu District.


Bianfishco, also known as Binh An Seafood Co., said it bought fishes from farmers in the Mekong Delta’s provinces of Can Tho, An Giang and Vinh Long to export into the U.S. and Euro.


The cooperative model with farmers directly selling fishes to seafood enterprises was proving to be an adequate way to boost the seafood industry’s growth, said deputy minister of agriculture and rural development Luong Le Phuong.


The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development asked relevant units to shut down the seafood plants, which are not qualified for hygiene standards.


The Ministry also instructed the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) to adjust their seafood firms ranking, relying on quality instead of quantity.


Raising exported pangasius price
At a meeting in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam’s 20 leading seafood exporters came to an agreement to raise the exported price of tra fish white fillet to $3 per kilogram and red fillet to $2.05 per kilogram. The increase will not be applied to the U.S.’s buyers.


Raising exported prices will encourage local exporters to buy tra fishes at the price of VND21,000 per kilogram or more, which will ensure farmers can make good profits, according to VASEP.


Statistics from the State Bank of Vietnam show that the outstanding loans for agriculture sector reached more than VND358 trillion ($17.9 billion) in the first ten months of the year, of which loans for tra fish farmers rising by 10.5 times of 1998’s figure.

Source: SGGP

Farmers earn big time from selling catfishes to US

In Uncategorized on December 16, 2010 at 9:33 am

The Gulf of Mexico oil spill problem rocketed price of exported catfish fillet to the US market, helping local farmer to gain big profits.

(Photo: http://www.dangcongsan.vn)

“We are taking pretty good profits from the surging catfish prices,” said Nguyen Van Mung, a catfish farmer in the Mekong Delta province of Dong Thap.


Local seafood producers exporting catfish fillet to the US market bought small catfishes with an average weight of 750-850 gram strongly at very high prices, he said.


“Farming costs this year was reduced significantly as we sold young catfish,” Mung said, adding that this year’s harvest time was 1-2 months sooner than previous years.


Mung gained a net profit of more than VND2 billion (US$100,000) from selling 700 tons of catfishes at the price of VND22,000 ($1) per kilogram, the highest gain in the last three years.


It usually takes farmers 6-7 months to farm catfishes for European and Asian markets. The US people preferred small catfishes, which are around 4-5 months old, so the profit from this market is better, Mung said.  


“Catfish farmer can make a profit of VND3,000-4,000 per kilogram from the current price offered by seafood exporters,” said veteran farmer Nguyen Van Thanh in the adjacent province of An Giang.


Statistics showed that export turnover of Vietnam’s seafood in October rose 20 percent year-on-year to $532 million. The turnover in the first 11 months of the year reached to the highest ever of $4.5 billion, only $3 billion lower than the year’s target. Analysts said the exported catfish fillet price of $4-4.2 per kilogram would ensure a booming harvest to local farmers.


However, the Mekong Delta Agriculture and Rural Development Department warned that farmers still have to deal with many problems after this year’s harvest time, including the lack of reinvestment and the increase in costs of fish foods and medicine.


Farmers said most of them had to borrow money from banks as it cost a huge investment of VND18-20 billion to breed 1,000 tons of catfishes. Borrowers can now expect to pay 16-18 percent interest on loans, up from 13-14 percent just a few weeks ago.


Banks favor co-operatives
The current lending rate of 16-18 percent is the biggest obstacle for local exporters, said Nguyen Van Dao, director of the seafood maker Go Dang. Some exporters said many lenders were not willing to offer loans to them.


Asia Commercial Bank (ACB)’s Can Tho Province branch, meanwhile, said they still loaned catfish exporters. But they restrained to provide loans for individual farmers, who they struggled to supervise.


The branch said they could consider to loan farmers, who cooperate with co-operatives outsourcing for seafood producers. 

Source: SGGP

HCM City to lift farmers out of poverty

In Uncategorized on November 10, 2010 at 2:21 am

Vedan agrees to compensate farmers

In Uncategorized on October 14, 2010 at 2:39 pm

Taiwanese MSG company Vedan has finally consented to compensate farmers to the tune of VND45.7 billion (US$2.4million) and VND53.6 billion (US$2.8 million) to both Ho Chi Minh City farmers and those from neighboring province Ba Ria-Vung Tau, said Nguyen Van Phung, chairman of the HCMC Farmer Association.

Vedan has agreed to compensate famers in HCMC and Ba Ria-Vung Tau, who are affected by environment pollution caused by the company as it had released untreated wastewater for years.Vedan August 9 also claimed it would determine the indemnity for farmers in Dong Nai Province within the next three days, Phung said.

It has been scheduled that Vedan and representatives from HCMC and Ba Ria-Vung Tau would sign agreement papers on the compensation August 13. One week later, the company will deliver 50 percent of the money to the provinces. Vedan has proposed releasing the remainder from January 10-14, 2011.


Localities’ representatives have yet to approve the timeline suggested by Vedan, Phung said.


Nguyen Van Hau, attorney for HCMC’s Can Gio district farmers in their lawsuit against Vedan, said that he and his colleague, lawyer Nguyen Trong Nghia, would work with the HCMC Farmer Association to write a compensation report for Vedan.


Farmers would drop their lawsuit against Vedan, as the company agreed to compensate them, Hau said.


However, Nguyen Duc, chairman of Dong Nai Province Lawyers Association, said that though Vedan has accepted to pay reparations, farmers still have the right to continue with their lawsuit against the company if they choose.

Source: SGGP

VFA to ensure farmers receive proper compensation from Vedan

In Uncategorized on October 14, 2010 at 2:38 pm

The Vietnam Farmers Association (VFA) will strictly oversee the compensation paid by Taiwanese MSG company Vedan to farmers in Ho Chi Minh City and neighboring province of Ba Ria-Vung Tau, to ensure that appropriate damages are paid to farmers affected by the company’s untreated wastewater, the association’s vice chairman Nguyen Duy Luong said August 10.

The Thi Vai River has been contaminated by waste water discharged from a Vedan Vietnam plant. (Photo: Dan Tri)

Vedan has agreed to pay affected farmers in Ho Chi Minh City VND45.7 billion (US$2.4 million) and those in the southern province of Ba Ria-Vung Tau VND53.6 billion (US$2.8 million).
 
The compensation is supposed to take place August 17, 2010 and in January of 2011.
 
Involved localities have been asked to provide the company bank account numbers for transferring the compensation and banks will act as a guarantee for those funds.
 
The localities will calculate and make plans to deliver damages to affected farmers based on the amount they are due to receive from Vedan.
 
Mr. Luong said the association would closely monitor the payment of compensation to ensure that the proper payees receive appropriate damages and to prevent misusing funds.
 
“It is the farmers’ money, affected households have to receive exact compensation which they are eligible for,” he added.

Source: SGGP

Vedan says yes to US$6.3 million for Dong Nai farmers

In Uncategorized on October 14, 2010 at 2:38 pm

Vedan Vietnam Enterprise Corp., Ltd agreed August 11 to compensate farmers in Dong Nai Province nearly VND120 billion (US$6.3 million).

A pipe releasing Vedan’s untreated wastewater to Thi Vai River in Dong Nai Province

In a document the company general director Yang Kun Hsiang sent to the province People’s Committee yesterday, affected farmers in Long Thanh and Nhon Trach districts will receive the indemnity calculated by the Institute of Natural Resources and Environment.


Vedan suggested paying the money in two stages. The company will release 50 percent of the compensation within a week, beginning from the date the province People’s Committee issues the approving paper. The second stage will be from January 10-14, 2011.


It was uncovered in September of 2008 that Vedan had been releasing untreated wastewater to Thi Vai River for many years. Over the next two years, the company continually haggled over how much they would be willing to compensate farmers in HCMC and Dong Nai and Ba Ria-Vung Tau provinces.


After farmers submitted papers to local people’s courts to sue the company and supermarkets began boycotting Vedan products, the company finally agreed to 100 percent of the compensation calculated by the institute for farmers.


On August 9, the company approved compensating farmers in HCMC and Ba Ria-Vung Tau Province to the tune of VND45.7 billion (US$2.4million) and VND53.6 billion (US$2.8 million) respectively.


Related article:
Vedan agrees to compensate farmers
VFA to ensure farmers receive proper compensation from Vedan

Source: SGGP

Farmers wavering between asking for compensation and lawsuit against Vedan

In Uncategorized on October 14, 2010 at 2:37 pm

The Dong Nai Province’s Farmer Association August 16 said it will collect opinions of 5,000 farmers, who were affected by Thi Vai River pollution, about continuing sue Vedan and not accepting its compensation.

 

Thi Vai River has been seriously polluted as a result.

Vedan Vietnam on August 13 agreed to pay farmers in the province VND120 billion (US$ 40 million), however, authorities and farmers is still arguing about the rate of compensation.


The provincial People’s Committee asked the association to work with related departments and the province’s lawyer association to collect farmers’ opinion from August 17.


The opinion polls have to be completed in the end of this month, said a representative from the provincial People’s Committee.


The province’s Long Tho Ward, home to 350 farmers affected by Thi Vai River pollution, submitted lawsuits to sue Vedan demanding compensation of VND350 billion (US$ 175 million) . They said VND120 billion would only compensate a tenth of 5,000 local farmers’ losses.


To date, Long Thanh District’ and Nhon Trach District’s People Courts have received over 3,200 lawsuit files from farmers against Vedan. Over 500 more files are being finalised by lawyers to proceed in court.


 

Source: SGGP

Polluter Vedan pays pledged compensation to affected farmers

In Uncategorized on October 14, 2010 at 2:36 pm

Vedan Vietnam transferred August 17 VND22.874 billion (US$1.2 million) to the Ho Chi Minh City Farmers Association to compensate farmers for losses it caused to them by polluting the Thi Vai River.

Representatives of Vedan Vietnam and Ho Chi Minh City sign the compensation agreement on August 13 (Photo: Dan Tri)

The money is half of the compensation amount which the Taiwanese MSG producer has pledged to give affected farmers in the city’s Can Gio District.
 
On the same day, Vedan transferred VND26.8 billion ($1.4 million) to the Ba Ria-Vung Tau Province People’s Committee to compensate affected farmers in the province.
 
The company also remitted additional VND500 million ($26,300) to the committee to cover the province’s cost of inspecting and calculating economic losses suffered by affected farmers.
 
According to agreements signed on August 13 between Vedan and representatives of the city and province, the remainder will be transferred on January 14, 2010 at the latest.


Vedan has yet to strike any deal with Dong Nai Province which suffered most from the pollution, with total estimated damages of nearly VND120 billion ($6.3 million).


Dong Nai authorities and farmers are still arguing about the rate of compensation.

Source: SGGP