Illustrative image (Source: VNA)

Tra Vinh (VNA) – The Department of Agriculture and Rural Development of the Mekong Delta province of Tra Vinh encouraged local farmers to cultivate other food crops in the place of rice on around 7,900 hectares of farming land in areas prone to climate change impacts such as drought and seawater intrusion.

The target areas include 2,140 hectares in Tra Cu district, 1,570 hectares in Chau Thanh district, 1520 hectares in Duyen Hai district, 615 hectares in Duyen Hai town, 730 hectares in Cang Long district, 560 hectares in Tieu Can district, 373 hectares in Cau Ke district, 350 hectares in Cau Ngang district, and 42 hectares in Tra Vinh city.

Recommended crops to replace rice include short-term industrial plants, fruit trees and in combination with aquaculture.

Vice Director of the Department Nguyen Ngoc Hai said restructuring is being made to improve efficiency of local crops and livestock in the context of climate change.

Assistance has been provided for local farmers to connect with enterprises to develop large-scale fields, she said.

Technology transfer and training have been strengthened while resources will be mobilized from all economic sectors for completing infrastructure facilities serving production, Hai said.

Tra Vinh has around 234,000 hectares for rice growing, producing 1.2 million tonnes per year.

Under the agricultural restructuring programme, the province plans to reduce the total rice cultivation area to 224,000 hectares by 2020, and 201,000 hectares by 2030. At the same time, rice output will be maintained at 1.3 million tonnes per year, of which high-quality rice accounts for 70-80 percent.

Over the past three years of implementing the programme, nearly 6,000 hectares have been shifted to planting other more lucrative crops, including aquaculture, watermelons, peanuts, grass for feeding cows, vegetables, and corn.-VNA