Reforms in the aquaculture sector in the Mekong Delta province of Vinh Long have resulted inseveral advanced aquatic farming areas with high-economic value, said Lieu Cam Hien, Vice Director of the provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.

Vinh Long is currently home to nearly 95 hectares of tra fish farms certified with VietGAP, GlobalGAP/ASCC/BMP standards and two GlobalGAP-standard breeding production facilities covering 6.3 hectares.

In a bid to increase value and competitive capability of the local aquatic sector, the province has carried out a project on developing large-scale tra fish farms with advanced feeding systems in line with the GlobalGAP/ASCC/BMP standards from 2011-2015. As a result, two farms with a combined 10ha of fish farming ponds were awarded with GlobalGAP certificates in February this year.

However, reforms in the sector have been slower than expectation due to difficulties in connecting processing enterprises and local farmers. It is also difficult for the famers to access preferential capital, a barrier to aquaculture restructuring.

This year, the province aims to have 100 percent of tra fish farming areas adopt internationally recognised breeding practice. It is also developing collectives and groups which supply healthy fish fry, fish food, techniques and environmental management methods for the farmers.

In addition, it is consolidating the role of industry associations and organisations in linking production and consumption, safeguarding benefits for both sellers and buyers and increasing the efficiency of the aquaculture sector reforms.-VNA