The People’s Committee of southern Dong Nai province will cooperate with a Japanese company to grow super sorghum and build a series of factories to process this productive and multi-purpose plant.

With its high nutrition content and productivity of 180-300 tonnes per hectare every year, super sorghum can be used to produce food for dairy and beef cattle and its stalk can be processed into sugar and ethanol.

The project will be implemented through 2017, according to the project’s investor – the joint venture of Japan’s SOL Holdings Corp. and the NTS Partners Co. Ltd.

In phase one, 1,000 hectares of super sorghum will be grown and two factories capable of producing 45,000 tonnes of bio-pellets a year and one animal food plant with an annual capacity of 30,000 tonnes will be constructed.

Super sorghum areas will be expanded to 10,000 hectares and an ethanol biofuel plant will be constructed in phase two, said a representative of the SOL Holdings Corp.

The representative added that a partner of the firm committed to buying its bio-pellets in bulk for the next 20 years. Other products made from this plant can be exported to Japan and other countries.

Super sorghum is currently being cultivated on over 20 hectares on a trial basis at the Dong Nai Biotechnology Centre, which will grow 100 hectares this year and expand the area to 1,000 hectares in 2016 to ensure material supply for the factories, said Director of the provincial Department of Science and Technology Pham Van Sang.

Super sorghum, developed by Japan’s leading universities and institutes, can be harvested three times a year with the first reaping only 40 days after sowing, said Director of the provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development Pham Minh Dao.

The sugar content in super sorghum stalk is up to 17 percent and the amount of ethanol made from this plant can be 2-2.5 times higher than that from cassava or sugar cane, he noted.-VNA