Mekong Delta call for greater consumption of sweet potatoes to help farmers

The People’s Committee in the Mekong Delta Province of Dong Thap yesterday convened a meeting with related competent agencies upon solutions to consume sweet potatoes to help farmers.
Statistically, by the end of May 2021, Japanese purple sweet potato is grown in 266-ha land in Chau Thanh District with an output of 8,494 tons, mostly in Hoa Tan, Phu Long and Tan Phu communes.
Mekong Delta provinces call for greater consumption of sweet potatoes to help farmers ảnh 1 Mekong Delta provinces call for greater consumption of sweet potatoes to help farmers
Currently, farmers are facing difficulties in selling the vegetable; they must sell at a low price while traders proposed to buy less than expectation. Farmers have grown the vegetable spontaneously without linkage with supermarkets or businesses, but mainly by traders who will export to China later. However, due to the coronavirus pandemic, traders can’t export it.
To support sweet potato farmers, Dong Thap Specialty Cooperative, Dong Thap Entrepreneurs Club in Ho Chi Minh City, Ho Chi Minh City Communist Youth Union, and supermarkets worked together to help farmers.
Chairman of the People's Committee of Dong Thap Province Pham Thien Nghia asked authority in Chau Thanh District, sectors and businesses to join hands in consuming the vegetable. In the long term, the provincial People's Committee recommended that farmers must reorganize production in linkage with businesses which will help improve product quality.
The Department of Agriculture and Rural Development of Binh Tan District in Vinh Long Province said that Japanese purple sweet potato has continuously decreased, currently at VND 40,000 per quintal (approximately 60 kg) or about more than VND650 a kilogram.
Due to the Covid-19 epidemic impact resulting in difficulties in selling to China, sweet potato prices continuously dropped. Authorities in Vinh Long Province and other provinces have encouraged people to buy the vegetable to help farmers.
Currently, farmers are not harvesting sweet potatoes on a 4,000- hectare field. Farmers have harvested the vegetable of the summer-autumn crop on 3,200 hectares and the winter-spring crop on about 850 hectares.
In Kien Giang, police have bought 20 tons of sweet potatoes to support farmers in Binh Tan District.
In Hau Giang Province, members of the Provincial Women's Union bought more than 11 tons of Japanese purple sweet potatoes at the price of VND3,000 per kilogram to help farmers in Binh Tan District.
Son Van Luan, Director of Thanh Ngoc Agricultural Service Cooperative moaned due to the impact of the Covid-19 epidemic, traders refused to buy the vegetable because it is difficult to export; therefore, the price of the sweet potatoes dropped dramatically; farmers went broke because farmers have averagely spent VND150 million per hectare of sweet potatoes.

By staff writers - Translated by Anh Quan

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