Farmers struggle as shallots devalue to record low
Currently, there are more than 51,000 tons of unsalable shallots in Vinh Chau Town of Soc Trang Province, while the price of shallots at the field has dropped to a record low of only VND4,000-VND5,000 per kilogram, sending farmers into a difficult situation.
There are more than 51,000 tons of unsalable shallots in Vinh Chau Town of Soc Trang Province. (Photo: SGGP)
Mr. Ngo Hung, Secretary of the Party Committee of Vinh Chau Town of Soc Trang Province, on April 17, said that the price of shallots was at an all-time low, and the locality was carrying out many solutions to help farmers to consume their produce.
The Economic Department of Vinh Chau Town informed that at present, there are more than 51,000 tons of shallots that cannot be sold. Earlier, farmers had harvested shallots massively from January to February, with a total area of 5,300 hectares. However, up to now, shallots have not been able to consume yet.
The price of shallots packed in mesh net bags is currently from VND15,000 to VND20,000, while that of unharvested shallots grown on sandy soil is only VND4,000-VND5,000 per kilogram and VND9,000-VND10,000 per kilogram for those grown on field soil.
Many farmers in Vinh Chau Town face difficulties because of the record low price of shallots. (Photo: SGGP)
Mr. Ma Chi Tho, Head of the Economics Department of Vinh Chau Town, said that because shallots originating from China and Thailand were sold on the market at only VND3,000 per kilogram, so domestically-grown shallots also declined. Besides, due to the complicated situation of the Covid-19 pandemic, shallots could not be exported in the past months. Previously, Vinh Chau shallots were mainly exported to China. Mr. Thach Nua, 52, a farmer in Vinh Hai Commune in Vinh Chau Town, said that his family had planted 1.5 hectares of shallots and finished harvesting nearly a month ago. However, because the price of shallots was too low, his family had to stockpile about 60 tons of shallots to wait for the price to go up. With the current average price of VND6,000-VND9,000, farmers suffer heavy losses, with an average loss of nearly VND10 million per 1,000 square meters of shallots. Currently, the prices of seeds, fertilizers, and plant protection drugs are quite high, so the prices of shallots at the fields must be from VND15,000 per kilogram upwards for farmers to earn profits. Not only Mr. Thach Nua's family, but many other shallot farmers in Vinh Chau also face difficulties because of the record low price of shallots. Many families cannot afford to start a new shallot crop and do not have warehouses to store shallots, or they have to sell shallots at low prices because they must pay for fertilizers and plant protection drugs. Mr. Ngo Hung said that besides focusing on carrying out solutions to find a market for shallots, the Party Committee of Vinh Chau Town has agreed to call for support of local officials to "rescue” shallots, contributing to helping shallot farmers to overcome the current difficult situation.