The Netherlands supports for the healthy and safe Vietnamese pig chain in Vietnam

Hanoi - The 4 year project supported by the Netherlands Transition Facilities (TF) has recently concluded laying foundation for a sustainable and international oriented pork supply chain in Vietnam. 

Pif farm
Pig farm

The Vietnamese love pork and it features frequently in their meals. Valued at $18 billion, Vietnam is among the world’s 10 biggest pork producers and consumers. According to Ipsos Business Consulting (IBC), in 2013, Vietnam consumed 3.5 million tons of meat of different kinds, and the figure is expected to increase by 30 percent to 4.5 million tons by 2019. It is no doubt that the Vietnamese swine market has potential, however, 85% of the breeding industry is undertaken by small farms, while there are only a few clean meat providers in the vast market. In November 2013, the Netherlands Ministry of Economic Affairs and Vietnamese Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) signed an MOU on co-operation in the upgrade of a Vietnamese pork chain in quantity, quality and safety standards. Under this framework, a 4 year Public Private Partnership program entitled ‘Value added International oriented production chain for Pork in Vietnam (VIP)’ was initiated and successfully implemented. The main aim of the VIP pork chain program is to upgrade a Vietnamese pork chain in quantity, quality and safety standards with the support of Netherlands know-how and technology in food inspection systems, slaughtering processes, veterinary services and farming techniques in order to be able to secure high-value markets, both domestic and internationally. The program therefore mobilized finance (app. 1.4 million USD) and the expertise from the Netherlands (NVWA, GD Animal Health, Holland Pig consortium) and Vietnam (MARD, provincial DARD, laughter houses, pig meat processors, Oxfam). The program consisted of 6 working packages managed and implemented by different stakeholders:

  1. Food safety control in slaughtering and processing establishments (NVWA – MARD): to support MARD in professionalizing official controls and in assisting food business operators to implement the hygiene, health and welfare measures necessary to comply with international standards
  2. Disease monitoring and eradicating (GD Animal Health – MARD): to assist MARD in designing an animal disease monitoring and eradication program for one or two major epizootic swine diseases of economic importance
  3. Capacity building in livestock quality management and veterinary control (NVWA-MARD): to provide capacity building for inspectors and extension workers to promote quality programs and monitor veterinary drug use at pig farms.
  4. Capacity building in value chain management: to increase management skills on safe feed and food production within the pork chain through research, training and study visits for (young) scientific professionals, business operators and government officials.
  5. Capacity building in pig farm management in accordance to VietGAHP and solutions to products distribution along the value chain (in cooperation with Holland Pig): to enhance knowledge on quality production on-farm, biosecurity, hygiene management, veterinary drug-use, disease control and resource efficiency of the pig producers and advisory staff.
  6. Capacity building on value chain innovation in long-term and key activities to upscale VIP pork chain: to develop long term strategic view on value added international oriented production chain for pork and translate back to implementable actions (reflection on chain transformation and innovation processes).

Five cities/provinces were selected to implement the program activities: Hanoi, Bac Giang, Vinh Phuc (in the North), HCMC and Dong Nai (in the South). The highlights of its 4 years can be named as 22 training courses on food safety, diseases control, farm management following VietGAHP with 500 participations; 6 workshops with 700 participants on sustainable development and efficient pig farming; and especially, 11 pork chains are upgraded with focus on innovations in mindset & management i.e. improving competitiveness of pork meat by ensuring food safety, free from diseases and traceability (Vinh Anh, An Ha companies, Hoang Long, Dong Tam cooperatives…).

Clsoing seminar VIP
Agricultural Counsellor Willem Schoustra is giving speech at the closing Seminar

Last month, 2 project closing seminars was held in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh city with the presence of representatives from the Netherlands Embassy, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and other program stakeholders (NVWA, NAEC, GD Animal Health, Holland Pig Consortium) and other business representatives, non-governmental organisations, universities and international organisations.  The aim of the seminars was to give an overview of all the activities and results of the projects dealing with a healthy and safe Vietnamese pig chain which have been financially supported by the Government of the Netherlands during the past 4 years in Vietnam. In his speech at the closing seminar of the program, the Netherlands Agriculture Counsellor Mr Willem Schoustra emphasized ‘ This seminar is not only to look back at achievements we have gained after 4 years working hard, but also to share lessons learnt and more importantly to look forward to future cooperation. The Netherlands has a lot of expertise in disease control and we can support Vietnam further in preventing and fighting against diseases like Classical swine fever, FMD, African swine fever…’

There are also 3 other completed programs under the framework of the Netherlands – Vietnam MoU on co-operation in the upgrade of a Vietnamese pork chain in quantity, quality and safety standards, which are Holland Pig (by De heus, Sonac, Nedap Agri, Fancom and VDL Agrotech), Small scale farms in rural areas (by Oxfam) and “Safe Pork Chain (by De Heus). It is no doubt that these programs have greatly contributed in livestock production and development in Vietnam and opened opportunities for further cooperation between Dutch and Vietnamese businesses.