Lam Dong fosters development of agricultural cooperatives hinh anh 1Growing mushroom in Lam Dong province’s Lac Duong district. (Photo:

Lam Dong (VNA) – The Central Highlands province of Lam Dong has set a target of having 250 well-functioning agricultural cooperatives and two cooperative alliances by 2020.

Nguyen Thi Tuong Vi, Deputy Chairwoman of the provincial Farmers Association, said at a seminar earlier this week that there are now 200 agricultural cooperatives in Lam Dong province but their scale and functioning are modest.

Under a joint programme between the provincial Cooperatives Alliance, Farmers Association and Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, the province also plans to establish 154 new agricultural cooperatives by the end of next year.

It provides support to cooperatives by offering training in management skills and helping build brand names and access soft loans.

During their establishment stage, its support includes 30 percent subsidy of the cost of equipment and infrastructure, 70 percent of the cost of buying packaging and labels and 40 percent of the cost of technologies.

At the seminar, cooperative representatives spoke about the difficulties they face. 

Nguyen Minh Phuong of Thanh Dat Cooperative in Da Lat city’s Ta Nung commune said under the new-style rural area programme, each commune must have at least one agricultural co-operative, but few create favourable conditions for their functioning, he said.

For instance, while households that produce to Vietnamese good agricultural practice (VietGAP) standards have the cost of applying for VietGAP certification subsidized, agricultural cooperatives do not, he said.

The province should consider creating more favourable conditions for cooperatives, he said.

At the seminar, companies from neighbouring provinces like Gia Lai and Dak Lak discussed with agricultural cooperatives contracts to supply inputs and buy their produce.

Those cooperatives that are operating efficiently help many farmers earn steady incomes.-VNA