The old farmer collects billions of money every year with the off-season specialty of yellow potatoes
For many years, old farmer Nguyen Trinh has planted and cared for Le Can sweet potato varieties, producing many famous products; billions of dollars in annual income.
Breeding sweet potatoes on red soil
The potato variety Le Can in Tan Binh commune (Dak Doa district, Gia Lai province) is famous for its delicious taste. One of the great contributors to bringing the aroma of Le Can potatoes away is old farmer Nguyen Trinh (56 years old).
Mr. Trinh recalls that in 1957, he and many people in Tra Doa village (Thang Binh district, Quang Nam province) went to Dak Doa to live and bring along sweet potatoes in the plains to plant on highland.
From two empty hands, Mr. Trinh saved money to expand the scale of the crop area. Particularly for sweet potato Le Can, seeing the economic value of this plant, Mr. Trinh rented 30 hectares of land for planting.
Mr. Trinh also tinkered with researching and manufacturing all kinds of machines for people to plant and take care of sweet potatoes such as potato plows and potato harvesters. Since then, production has increased significantly.
Mr. Nguyen Trinh shared: “Le Can sweet potato is like short-term crops, it only takes 3 months to harvest. This variety is characterized by yellow flesh, fleshy taste and characteristic aroma. If people plant in another land, only about 5km away, the smell and taste will be different.”
Collect billions every year
Le Can sweet potatoes are often harvested off-season compared to many regions of the country, so they always sell at a high price, 8,000-11,000/kg. Each hectare can earn 200-250 million VND/year, bringing in billions of VND per year for Mr. Trinh.($1=24,000 VND)
Mr. Trinh also built Tan Binh Agriculture and Service Cooperative with 8 members to link with relatives to develop Le Can sweet potato variety.
In 2022, he and the members of the cooperative planted nearly 50 hectares of potatoes with an output of 400 tons. With the price of 15,000 VND/kg, which is much higher than every year, members get a large amount of revenue.
“In previous years, I used to rent land to expand the scale of growing potatoes. However, in the past 2 years, rented land is scarce, so I can only grow 7 hectares on my land. I hope the government can plan land so that people can jointly build and expand the Le Can potato area”, Mr. Trinh wishes
In order to avoid the scene of “good harvest, devaluation”, old farmer Nguyen Trinh also researched and processed Le Can sweet potatoes into products such as sweet potato starch and potato vermicelli.
Mr. Trinh shared, since the beginning of 2020, he has been tinkering online to make a machine to make potato starch. Then, he used this starch to make potato vermicelli, which sold at a high price, about 120,000 VND/kg.($1=24,000 VND)
“With an abundant source of potatoes, I boldly process starchy products and potato vermicelli. People try and appreciate it, so I invest in machinery for industrial production,” Mr. Trinh shared.
Thanks to the income from sweet potatoes, the old farmer owns more than 10 hectares of coffee trees, 7 hectares of sweet potatoes, 3 hectares of potato growing areas and some other areas for medicinal herbs. Thereby, Mr. Trinh created regular jobs for dozens of local workers , hiring 50 people/day during the season.
Mr. Truong Minh Thang – Chairman of Tan Binh Commune People’s Committee said that Le Can sweet potato is a typical local product. Currently, this potato variety has been well received by many customers across the country. Over the years, people have joined together to develop Le Can sweet potatoes. The commune also accompanies the cooperative, helping with knowledge training, finding more stable outputs to help people have a higher income.
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