Before the complicated development of the COVID-19 pandemic, most social and economic sectors were severely impacted, but the agricultural sector of Thai Nguyen province still worked stably to play its supporting role for the economy. This thus showed that agriculture ensured stability in all stages and circumstances of life.
In 2021, the production value of agriculture, forestry and fishery was estimated at over VND14.6 trillion, representing a year-on-year growth of 4.18%. The yield was nearly VND118 million per hectare of land, higher than the plan. The province has seven more communes that completed new rural development criteria and 53 agricultural products recognized as OCOP products, of which seven were qualified for the 5-star class. Agriculture actively contributed to the overall growth of the local economy.
To successfully carry out its production plans in 2021, right from the beginning of the year, the agricultural sector made a careful framework for two production seasons. Consequently, rice and food crop farming avoided adversities, natural disasters, pests and diseases in the year to obtain a total grain output of nearly 461,000 tons, 6.1% more than the plan.
In parallel with ensuring food security, technical advances to increase the product value per unit of rice farming area, like Vietgap organic rice models, were also launched by many localities.
While fulfilling the plan, units and localities actively implemented the Project on Key Agricultural Product Development. In 2021, the province had more than 560 ha of key fruit trees (sugar apple, longan and pomelo). The tea area was estimated at over 455 ha, 6% larger than the yearly plan.
While crop farming was favorable, the livestock industry of Thai Nguyen province faced enormous difficulties caused by diseases. Avian flu, foot-and-mouth disease, skin rash and African swine fever occurred in livestock herds. Furthermore, the price of animal feeds remained high while product distribution and consumption were difficult. The low product selling price distressed farmers. Faced with this reality, the agricultural sector supported and encouraged livestock farmers to scale up vaccinations, surveil and detect diseases for localization and prevention.
Quarantine and slaughtering were also controlled. The agricultural sector also actively built a chain link model, expanded livestock herds, built safe slaughterhouses and breeding areas to ensure environmental sanitation. From drastic solutions, Thai Nguyen's live meat output reached nearly 157,000 tons valued at over VND6,500 billion, up 5% over 2020.
2021 was also the year that science and technology, especially high-tech applications, were strongly deployed in the agricultural industry. That process was reflected in stronger organic production, focused on transferring and applying scientific advances to plants and livestock suitable to local advantages and scaling up the adoption of new stocks and varieties. Intensive production processes like VietGap were applied to mechanized and automated production and processing.
Science and technology were applied to production to increase product value and this process was clearly demonstrated through digital transformation for agricultural development towards high-tech and smart agriculture.
Mr. Nguyen Van Ba, Director of Viet Cuong Rice Noodle Cooperative (Dong Hy district), said, “The number of products launched on e-commerce platforms has increased a lot with less intermediary cost for product sales.”
The agriculture sector has been closely coordinating with industry-trade and information-communication sectors as well as related units to accelerate digital transformation to support technology transfer and support agricultural consumption. The sector has introduced Vietgap-certified food producers to food safety chains and e-commerce platforms where clear origin is needed and product prices are higher.
By Vietnam Business Forum