About 60 farmers and farm extension workers from southern Vietnam participated in localized trainings on sustainable agrichemical and pest management practices on June 27 and 28, 2017. Held in An Giang and Vinh Long provinces, the two trainings were spearheaded by MI alumni who attended the Regional Training Program on Assuring Food Safety through Pest and Agrichemical Management last May 2017.
Mr. Huynh Chi Thanh of An Giang Fruit-Vegetables and Foodstuff Joint Stock Company (ANTESCO) trained 20 farm extension workers on controlling pests and the use of chemical inputs on green soybean and baby corn cultivation. Conversely, about 40 longan farmers attended the integrated pest management (IPM) training hosted by Mr. Huynh Thanh Loc of the Southern Horticultural Research Institute.
Mr. Huynh Quang Vinh, Deputy Director General of ANTESCO, explained that the indiscriminate use of inorganic fertilizers and pesticides remains to be a common practice among local farmers in An Giang Province. He related that the training provided an opportunity for his company’s extension workers to discuss strategies in engaging farmers to adopt effective agrichemical and pest control practices.
Longan farmers from Vinh Long Province’s Hoa Dinh District expressed their appreciation for conducting the IPM training in their village. One of the participants, Mr. Sau Nhieu, shared that he learned a lot from the one-day training session. “Farmers in our village do not have access to new [agricultural] information like those discussed today. This is why I am very happy to join this event because I learned from experts and also shared my own experience in managing pests,” he explained.
The two activities are part of the action plans developed by Mr. Thanh and Mr. Loc under the New Zealand Aid Programme (NZAP)-funded Food Safety Project (FSP). The Mekong Institute-FSP primarily aims to build up the capacity of various sectors in adopting and promoting better food safety practices along the horticultural value chain.