Cassava cultivation (Photo: cafef.vn)

Hanoi (VNA)
– Vietnamese farmers will have the chance to access advanced technologies in cassava pest management and disease-free cassava cultivation through a Japanese supported project, which kicked off in Hanoi on May 4.

According to director general of the Agricultural Genetics Institute Le Huy Ham, who is also the project director, the project will focus on detecting cassava pathogens, seeking suitable technical measures to diagnosing cassava diseases, developing disease-free cassava varieties and providing knowledge for the farmers.

A laboratory to develop disease-free varieties to meet domestic as well as Asian demands is included in the project, Ham said.

Cassava diseases, especially the witches’ broom disease, are posing great threats to yields, President of the Vietnam Cassava Association Nguyen Van Lang highlighted.

Vietnam’s cassava productivity only reaches 18.7 tonnes per hectare, much lower than Thailand and India, he stated, adding that the project will help improve cassava quality as it offers good disease management.

Meanwhile, Keiji Takasu from Japanese Kyushu University, leading consultant of the project, highlighted that under the project resistant varieties will be deployed to fight against cassava diseases while less-chemical cultivating measures will be encouraged for sustainable cassava development.

The project, being implemented from 2016-2020, received an official development assistance fund worth 125 billion VND (5.6 million USD) from the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

Experts from Cambodia, Japan, Thailand and Vietnam, will participate in the project.-VNA