Enhancing regional links in production and consumption stages is urgently needed to increase the value of farm produce in the Mekong Delta – the largest rice granary in Vietnam.

Speaking at a workshop in Can Tho City on December 11, Vice Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Truong Quang Hoai Nam said while the delta supplies over 90 percent of rice destined for foreign markets and contributes around 27 percent of the nation’s GDP, the region still exports mainly unprocessed farm products with low commercial value.

He urged research institutes and universities to get involved in the production chain and technological transfer through developing and supplying high-yield, quality plant and animal strains as well as advanced cultivating and breeding techniques.

At the same time, exporters need to share information to prevent unfair competition and popularise the brand names of farm produce in the global market, experts said.

The Departments of Agriculture and Rural Development in 13 cities and provinces in the delta are collaborating to expand the application of environmentally-friendly production models in accordance with the V ietnam Good Agricultural Practice (VietGAP) and GlobalGAP standards.

This aims to increase prices for export farm produce, particularly such staples as rice, shrimp, tra fish and fruit, according to Pham Van Quynh, Director of the Can Tho Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.-VNA