The health crisis disrupted supply chains forcing farmers’ associations to reorganise and support production. Hundreds of families now sell their products online.
Ho Chi Minh City (AsiaNews) – The southern province of Đồng Tháp has invested in agriculture to support the local population facing economic hardships caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
As a result of the health crisis, about 30,000 people from Ho Chi Minh City, Bình Dương, Đồng Nai and Long An have arrived in the province, where 48 per cent of the population is employed in agriculture.
Since June, the supply chains first have been disrupted, first slowing down, then becoming gridlocked; farmers' associations responded by reorganising themselves to support the production and distribution of their own products.
To this end, the Zalo group was set up to encourage the members of the provincial farmers’ association to participate and share experiences and farming services, this according to its vice president, Phan Thi Kim Nhung.
Through the application of new development and production models it was possible to minimise losses.
In Đồng Tháp, farmers found themselves with shortages of seasonal workers, and part of their crops was likely to be lost because they could not be picked or sold.
In small and medium-sized locations, the Zalo group introduced the farm service group (Nhóm Nông Vụ) model, which made it possible to harvest and sell agricultural products.
So far, “farm service groups have helped farmers harvest rice, favoured group action, and improved production,” said Nguyen Van Hai, vice president of the Đóc Binh Kiều Farmers' Association.
Starting in June, the farmers' association in Đồng Tháp province established more than 147 groups and 69 new places of sale for agricultural products.
In parallel, thanks to the farm service group model, farmers are able to market their products via the Internet. A total of 327 families in Đồng Tháp province have sold their crop via online commercial platforms like Voso and Postmart.
Between August to 10 October, at least 1,338 tonnes of food have been sold through these sites. For the Post Office, this has meant opening new branches to distribute essential goods across the province.