Enhancing the resource of cooperation, supporting farmers to develop the connection models under sustainable value chain
09:47 - 29/11/2020
(VNFU portal) - From November 12-13, in Hanoi, the Central Vietnam Farmers Union (NDVN) held a seminar "Summarizing and sharing experiences in implementing the MTCP2 Program 2014 - 2020 phase and planning the Asia-Pacific Farmers Program (APFP) period 2021 - 2025 ”.

 
Vice Chairman of the Central Committee of the Vietnam Farmer Union Mr. Nguyen Xuan Dinh chaired and delivered his opening speech.

Vice Chairman of VNFU Nguyen Xuan Dinh chaired the Seminar. There were over 100 delegates attending the seminar who are leaders of departments, units under the Central Vietnam Farmer Union; Ministries, branches, IFAD offices in Vietnam, Coordination Committees at all levels of projects under the National IFAD Program; Farmers' Union of 15 provinces and representatives of cooperative Groups and Cooperatives.

 
Speaking at the opening of the Seminar, Mr.Nguyen Xuan Dinh, Vice Chairman of VNFU, stated: MTCP 2 is a medium-term cooperation program between the International Agricultural Development Fund (IFAD) and regional farmer organizations Asia-Pacific 2014 – 2020 phase, funded by the International Agricultural Development Fund (IFAD) and the European Union (EU). This Program aims to strengthen farmer organizations in the Asia and the Pacific region in policy consultation related to the interests of smallholder farmers at the national level, sub-region and region; at the same time improving the supply of services to the rural poor.

 
Over the past years, the coordination between the Vietnam Farmer Union and the National IFAD Program has been implemented closely and achieved many remarkable results. As a result, all levels of the  Union have more opportunities and favorable conditions to participate in local socio-economic development programs, especially projects under the national IFAD program. In addition to the two cooperation agreements signed between the Vietnam Farmer Union and the IFAD Office in Vietnam in 02 phases, the Union at all levels are also allowed to directly participate in the cooperation contents. When these programs are finished, IFAD will hand over to Farmer Union to maintain the activities of the co-interest groups, the cooperative group established by IFAD to connect development into cooperatives.

 
It’s remarkable that in the period 2015 - 2019, there are the 11 provincial farmer  Union cooperated with IFAD to organize 48 vocational training classes for 1,500 members and farmers; 202 key trainers were trained and more than 11,700 members, farmers were trained in information access, market, value chain development, business production planning, group management and financial management, building collective brand; supported the establishment of 1,970 farmer groups with similar interests with 21,280 members and hundreds of effective production and business models.

 
Vice Chairman Mr. Nguyen Xuan Dinh emphasized- “The  MTCP 2 program has achieved positive results. At the seminar today, the Program Management Board will evaluate all the achieved results; Proposing participants to actively share lessons and valuable experiences gained during the project implementation. At the same time, together exchange, discuss and make recommendations to build a complete plan for the next stage so that the project can fulfill the meaningful goal - that is to develop rural poor communities following the sustainable direction, building the prosperous agriculture, rich farmers, modern civilized countryside ”.
 
 
Sharing the results of the implementation of the MTCP 2 Program 2014 - 2020 phase in Vietnam, Mr. Mai Bac My - Member of the Standing Committee, Director of External Affairs and International Cooperation Department (VNFU), Director of the program said : “ MTCP 2 program focuses on supporting the development of 16 Cooperative Groups and Cooperatives for the production of safe vegetables, oranges,  codonopsis, Custard-apple, snow bananas, coffee, goat and cow breeding under 8 provinces, 10 districts and 12 communes have been selected in the project area.

 
The MTCP2 program has organized 27 training courses, 6 seminars, 15 market researches, 8 research visits, 32 focus group discussions ... to help members, farmers improve capacity, improve livelihood . At the same time, supporting output market research, facilities and hiring consultancy experts and analyze product quality to support farmers. Up to now, there have been 6 cooperative groups are promoted to be Cooperatives by Program that attracting more members to take part in and also bringing better income for members.
After nearly 6 years of implementation, the MTCP 2 Program has brought many positive impacts. Firstly, contributing to affirm and enhance the position and role of Farmer Unions in socio-economic development, policy development process and also improve the material, cultural and spiritual life of the officials, members, farmers. Secondly, Union’s officials and farmers have made significant changes in their thinking and perceptions; improving capacity to access knowledge and share information, production and business experience; to be propagated and properly aware of the Party's policies and lines, the State's policies and laws related to agriculture, farmers and rural areas. At the same time, realizing the role, significance and effectiveness of programs and projects implemented by the Program Management Board, local authorities are very interested in supporting and facilitating; Many provinces have received additional funding to expand training activities, support Farmers' Clubs and organize sightseeing, research and learning experience.
 
Overview of the seminar
 

Typically in Lam Ha district, Lam Dong province, with the support of all levels of the Union and local authorities, two affiliated farmer groups (initially only 5 members/group) was established and developed into 02 sustainable cooperative groups in coffee production with 110 members participating in cultivation on an area of about 200 coffee hectares. They worked together to make production and business plan and shared experiences in coffee production according to international UTZ standards, in particular focusing on sustainable production, ensuring economic development together with Environmental Protection; connected with input and output market to products with prices higher than the market prices. Up to now, 2 cooperative groups have developed into cooperatives and operated effectively.
 
 
For the Farmer Union, the MTCP 2 program supports the development of foreign aid and promotion programs in the fields of agricultural and fishery encouragement, livestock, processing and consumption of agricultural products to improve capacity of Union’s officials at all levels. In addition, supporting the Union to organize evaluation and training conferences to bring into the best effect of the projects as well as discuss and solve problems in the implementation process.
 
Vice Chairman Mr. Nguyen Xuan Dinh and Delegates visited the booth displaying products at the Conference
 
 
At the seminar, delegates discussed and evaluated the participation of all levels in the implementation of the national IFAD Program activities as well as the coordination to implement the National IFAD Program and Mid-term cooperation the Program between IFAD and farmer organizations in the Asia-Pacific region. At the same time, they share advantages and disadvantages and practical experiences in the process of implementing the Program in localities.
 
Chairman of Bac Kan Province Farmer Union, Mr. Luu Van Quang shared his experience in the teaching farmers model in locality.
 
 
Sharing about the experience of the farmer teaching model in the locality, Chairman of Bac Kan Province Farmer Union, Mr. Luu Van Quang said: The Province Farmer Union has selected good farmers, experienced in farming and husbandry with good practice skills to guide household groups in the form of “on the job”, direct training in the field. In particular, the model of sustainable farming on sloping land is deployed with the scale of 60 households participating on an area of ​​6 hectares; beneficiaries of the model are members and farmers. Specifically, the model is designed to grow corn and grass in contour lines to reduce erosion against leaching; At the same time, it helps to increase income for the households participating in the model on the same cultivated area unit compared with the traditional maize cultivation method as before.

 
 Chairman of Ha Giang Province Farmer Union, Mr. Tran Xuan Thuy shared: Ha Giang is one of 15 provinces and cities participating in the MTCP 2 program. During the implementation, the Provincial Farmers Union pays special attention to the participation of female farmers, poor farmers, ethnic minorities ... Currently, the Province farmer Union has established 685 farmer groups with more than 7,800 members participating; including more than 3,600 poor households, over 7,000 ethnic minority households, and more than 2,600 female members. It’s remarkable that many groups have actively connected the production stage to goods consumption with the existing value chains of the program. Through the program, over 15 agricultural products of the province such as dried meat, cardamom, honey are packed with full packages, labels and introduced to the market with high profits.
 
 
Speaking at the Seminar, Mr. Nguyen Thanh Tung - Senior Expert, Vietnam IFAD Office highly appreciated the comprehensive cooperation results between Vietnam Farmer Union and IFAD in recent years. With the aim of cooperating with the development of models connecting farmers and developing a sustainable value chain, Mr. Tung proposed: “In the coming time, the two parties continue to build and improve support policies for agricultures, farmers, and rural areas are based on the practical activities of the Vietnam Farmer Union. At the same time, focus on building smart agricultural value chains that adapt to climate change; forming connection between farmer organizations and supply firms”.
 
Delegates attending the Seminar took souvenir photos together
 
 
Continuing the series of activities of the Seminar, on November 13, Delegates exchangedand discussed the specific planning for the Asia-Pacific Farmer Program (APFP). The long-term goals are: The Asia-Pacific Farmers Organization (APFP) program to contribute to creating an environment conducive to poverty alleviation in rural areas, through specific support to smallholders and their organization at the national, regional and sub regional levels in the Asia-Pacific.

And in particular the program's development goals is: Farmer Organizations with professional capacity that provide sustainable service as demand (business and technical) services to their members and engage in effective policy dialogue to improve the livelihoods and incomes of farmers/smallholders in Asia-Pacific.
“The MTCP 2 program is in the closing stage and building the MTCP Program phase 3 (referred to as the Asia-Pacific Farmers Program), it’s required IFAD, especially the National IFAD Office to continue to coordinate, support and creat conditions for the implementation of the Program's activities in order to consolidate and strengthen the capacity of the  Union's organization; support to promote the development of value chain cooperatives and agribusiness models, connecting national interests with regional and global visions and strategies in sustainable agricultural and rural development ”- Mr. Mai Bac My - Member of Standing Committee, Head of Foreign Relations and International Cooperation Committee (Central Vietnam Farmer Union) proposed.
 
Many typical agricultural products of the provinces participating in the project are displayed at the Seminar
 
 
 
The MTCP2 program is implemented in 17 countries in 3 regions, including: ASEAN region and China; South Asia region; Pacific region.
 
In Vietnam, there are 15 provinces directly supported by the MTCP 2 Program, including: Ha Giang, Cao Bang, Bac Kan, Tuyen Quang, Bac Giang, Thai Binh, Thanh Hoa, Ha Tinh, Quang Binh, Gia Lai. , Ninh Thuan, Dak Nong, Lam Dong, Ben Tre, Tra Vinh.
 
Specifically, the provinces participate in the MTCP 2 Program with 3 parts; These are: Enhancement of capacity and connection among farmer organizations; Strengthen the participation of farmer organizations in the policy development; Enhancement of service supply and participation in agricultural and rural development programs by farmer organizations.
 

Cong Dat translated by My Linh
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