Huynh Van Dung in Tan Bang commune, Ca Mau province, has pursued a rice-shrimp farming model for more than a decade. A few years ago, salt intrusion and epidemics caused great losses on his 1.5 ha farmland.
But thanks to a project to improve the sustainability of the shrimp-rice farming system, his family's shrimp farming productivity has increased steadily. By applying new techniques, Dung can earn 3,500 USD per hectare a year.
Dung told VOV “The rice-shrimp farming model is more efficient. Rice cultivation is harder but results in lower economic efficiency. The shrimp price is high now, yielding from 20 to 35 USD per kilo.”
Bac Lieu province, the second largest shrimp farming area in Vietnam after Ca Mau, has more than 34,000 hectares of land applying the rice-shrimp farming model.
Aiming to become the hub of Vietnam’s shrimp production, Bac Lieu is applying science and technology to shrimp farming models. The model of super-intensive shrimp farming in a closed house of Vietnam-Australia Company yields a yearly productivity of 100 tons per ha.
Many local businesses and farmers have shifted to this model, raising Bac Lieu’s total shrimp production last year to more than 142,000 tons, up 10% against the previous year.
Duong Thanh Trung, Chairman of the provincial People's Committee, said Bac Lieu has constructed a high-tech shrimp production zone covering 418 ha and with total investment of more than 43 million USD.
“20 investors have registered in the high-tech zone. Several institutes and universities have followed suit because they want to introduce scientific and technological advances in shrimp production to make the zone a national shrimp production hub. We hope in the future the high-tech zone and high-tech farming models will be expanded across Bac Lieu province and the Ca Mau Peninsula in general,” said Trung.
Vietnamese shrimp has long been popular to consumers around the world and available in nearly 80 countries and territories. Every year, it contributes about 4 billion USD to the national export turnover.
Nguyen Viet Trung, Head of the Trade Section of Ca Mau’s Department of Industry and Trade, said there remain lots of difficulties for the sector including technical barriers.
Vietnam's seafood has been imposed with the EU’s yellow card leading to stricter control for shrimp products. In addition to traditional markets such as the US, China, Japan, and the Republic of Korea, Vietnamese exporters have expanded export markets to Russia and Britain and paid greater attention to the domestic market.
Trung said, “Exports are a fundamental direction to improve the value of agricultural products. We have exported shrimp products to many countries, helping gain high profits. Thanks to attaching more importance to the domestic market, Ca Mau’s shrimp products have become widely popular among Vietnamese consumers, especially in HCMC and Hanoi. The export of Ca Mau’s shrimp and other types of seafood is expected to continue to grow in the future.”