Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Xuan Cuong (left) learns about products of the Vietnam Forestry Science Institute.(Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA)
- The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) will continue to develop breeding sources for the agriculture sector according to the needs of the market, said Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Xuan Cuong at a workshop held on June 24 to review the seed production plan.

Breeding and seed stocks are very important to farmers, and Vietnam has gained many achievements in breed development as well as the application of scientific advances in agriculture sector, according to the minister.

He said that while Vietnam was integrating into the international economy, the transfer of breeds needed to be encouraged. He said agriculture units needed to have plans to export breeds.

The minister said there was still an imbalance between State-owned firms and the private sector in this area.

“The State-owned agriculture institutes and schools have a lot of professors and doctors, with relatively adequate facilities while the private sector has a shortage of these," he said. "But coordination among the parties in breed development is ineffective."

Market adaptation had not been high, he said, and had focused too much on rice varieties, while many other crops such as vegetables, potatoes and flowers were still imported in large quantities. The Government and agriculture businesses should do a better job of integrating into international systems in this area, he added.

According to Nguyen Van Viet, Director of the MARD’s Planning Department, many new breeds have been created and applied on a large scale, helping to increase productivity, quality, efficiency and incomes for farmers.

Nearly 10 years after the development scheme began nearly 1,000 varieties of plants and animals have been put into production.

Productivity of many crops and livestock has been increased beyond the scheme's target of 15 percent. Over the course of the scheme, maize productivity increased by 16 percent, oranges by 25 percent, longan by 26 percent, tea by 22 percent, coffee by 20.5 percent, tra fish by 22 percent, and pork by 32 percent.

The agriculture minister said that while progress had been impressive, there was more work to do.

In order to improve the nation's capacity for research, production and management of plant and animal breeds and encourage investment in this area, MARD had asked the Prime Minister for permission to develop another development scheme for the 2021-30 period, Cuong said.

The aim of the project was to increase the use rate of advanced technical varieties in agricultural production to improve productivity and quality and allow the industry to continue to grow.

The plan was expected to help put 500-700 new breeds of plants and animals into production.

The ministry would also increase investment in research institutes, enterprises, agencies, organisations and individuals to produce seeds with high productivity, quality and adaptation to climate change.-VNA