Ben Tre plans to develop district into nation’s epicentre for fruit seedlings
The district, the country’s largest producer of fruit seedlings, uses advanced techniques to produce them, mostly for durian, jackfruit, mango, and rambutan.
Its area under seedlings has expanded from 400ha in 2016 to 1,500ha now, and it supplies more than 20 million seedlings a year besides 15-18 million flowers and ornamental plants.
Doan Van Danh, director of the provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, said becoming a national hub for seedlings, flowers and ornamental plants is a major mission meant to achieve a breakthrough in socio-economic development.
Under the plan, the district will set up a research and development centre to create high-value species.
It will disseminate techniques for producing seedlings that meet good agricultural practices standards to farmers and co-operatives.
The district plans to produce 40 million seedlings a year by 2025.
It will establish a co-operative alliance for producing seedlings and set up an e-commerce platform next year for trading them as well as flowers and ornamental plants.
To improve seedling quality, it has chosen quality trees and register them as ‘elite’ trees and develop elite orchards.
It will help households register brand names for their seedlings.
It will set up co-operatives, co-operative groups and craft villages, and create linkages between growers and buyers of seedlings.
A growing number of seedling growers are registering with authorities for ownership of elite plants and orchards.
Thanh Seedling Producing Establishment in Cho Lach District’s Hoa Nghia Commune said it has registered 40 plants and one orchard.
Many like Thanh red longan and Thanh Draft avocado were created by proprietary research, it added.
Pham Hong Khanh, chairman of the Thang Loi Co-operative in Cho Lach District’s Long Thoi Commune, said his co-operative is determined to be the district leader in producing seedlings, creating value chains and ensuring origin traceability.
The development of elite plants and orchards would ensure quality, he added.
The province has more than 90 registered elite plants and 300 elite orchards, according to its Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.
To improve infrastructure for seedling production, the district has also built embankments to keep out saltwater and high tides, and upgraded rural roads.
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