Locally grown, temperate vegetables were difficult to source in the north of Vietnam during summer. This study explored using elevated growing regions in northern Vietnam to meet the demand. It examined supply chain management, postharvest and production practices, and the establishment of a support mechanism to enable smallholders to adopt sustainable, market-orientated practices.
Why study this?
It is difficult to source temperate vegetables in the north of Vietnam during summer because temperatures are too high in the vegetable production areas near Hanoi and there is limited supply of vegetables from Da Lat. This supply constriction is exacerbated by inadequate transportation, supply chain constraints and competition with rice production. Demand for temperate vegetables during the summer window is supplemented by imports from China, which concerns consumers and government regulators due to questionable food safety standards.
What was done
The project focused on three locations in Moc Chau in the province of Son La. This region has a suitable climate for counter-seasonal temperate vegetable production with access to key markets.
Areas researched were: supply chain management, postharvest and production practices, and the establishment of a support mechanism to enable smallholders to adopt sustainable, market-orientated practices.
What we found
Over three years to March 2013 the area used for growing safe off-season vegetables has increased five-fold, with benefits flowing through the supply chain and region, 400t of accredited safe vegetables have been supplied, gross margins for off-season vegetables for project farmers more than doubled, skills of participating farmers and institution staff have improved. There have also been environmental benefits.
Where to next?
Focus areas for the final year of the project include: trademark registration and implementation of the Rau An Toan Moc Chau logo; scaling up and out, further analysis of the value chain.
The transition to sustainability is a crucial next step.
For more information contact
Dr Gordon Rogers, Applied Horticultural Research Pty Ltd