In response to the national target programme on building new-style rural areas launched three years ago, the northeastern province of Quang Ninh has built specialised agricultural production zones, invested in processing factories, and coordinated with businesses to find stable outlets for local agricultural, forestry, and aquatic products.

The efforts have raised local incomes and promote the trademarks of local agricultural products, reported Radio The Voice of Vietnam (VOV).

Farmers of Cong Hoa ward in Quang Yen town are busily harvesting vegetables, which will be bought at higher prices and processed by the local processing companies. Since the beginning of the harvest season, they have been able to collect three tonnes of vegetables a day thanks to commitments from both sides in a new production-processing model.

Farmers pledge to follow strict rules to ensure product quality, and local companies pledge to buy their vegetables at prices five percent higher than the market. They no longer suffer from their small-scale production with its low productivity and now plan to expand their vegetable fields.

"Our family economy has improved significantly thanks to this new model. We just have to harvest vegetables and wait for the companies to come and buy them at good prices," Pham Thi Phuong Thao, local farmer, told VOV.

Since 2012, the local authorities in Cong Hoa ward have applied appropriate management mechanisms to attract participation of businesses in the local production as part of new rural development.

In addition to buying farmers’ agricultural products at higher prices, local businesses have also invested nearly 900,000 USD in building irrigation systems, upgrading processing companies and storage areas, and promoting trademarks for local products.

Thanks to this new model, every hectare of land used for growing vegetables now can earn as much as 7,500 USD in revenue, double the previous rate.

Pham Van Son, chairman of the Cong Hoa ward People’s Committee, said that they are planning to build net houses for hot-house plants of higher retail value. He said a prerequisite condition to make this model a success is that farmers have to strictly honor their commitments in terms of quality and sanitation.

Quang Ninh province is prepared to promote the trademarks of 23 local agricultural products. The local authorities have finished setting up zones for centralised production activities and established 15 associations and collectives tasked with managing production activities, applying the latest production technologies, controlling product quality, and finding reliable outlets for the products.

Dinh Sy Nguyen, head of the Intellectual Property Division of the Quang Ninh provincial Department of Science and Technology, said "Among the 19 criteria set for the national programme on new rural development, the three economic criteria are the most important, yet most difficult to achieve."

Building strong trademarks for local products will address this problem. To achieve this goal, it’s necessary to set up specific zones for centralised production while ensuring every required step to improve product quality. More importantly, associations and companies play a crucial role in providing stable outlets for the farmers, he added.

A number of agricultural products of Quang Ninh province, including Dong Trieu custard-apples, Yen Tu yellow apricot flowers, and Quang Yen clams, are gaining a foothold in the market and lifting the competitiveness of the province’s agricultural products.-VNA