Saturday, 18 Nov 2017

Smart agriculture development: Irreversible trend

Updated at Monday, 16 Oct 2017, 14:12
The Hanoitimes - At the 2nd Vietnam Farmers’ Forum, the Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue stated, applying achievements of the industrial revolution 4.0 into Vietnam’s agricultural production to develop smart agriculture is an irreversible trend.
The 2nd Vietnam Farmers’ Forum with theme “Farmers is ready with the agriculture 4.0”, which is held by the Vietnam Farmer’s Union on October 14 at Hanoi. Attending the event were the Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue, along with Chairman of the Vietnam Farmer’s Union Lai Xuan Mon and related ministries, administrative agencies, cities, provinces, enterprises, scientists and especially 87 outstanding Vietnamese farmers. 

At present, Vietnam has in total 13.8 million households of farmers with 78 millions of small fragmented farms. In order to develop agriculture successfully, Vietnam has to focus on restructuring the agricultural sector, in which one of the key solution is to push forward with high technological agriculture and applying achievements of the industrial revolution 4.0. Speaking at the opening ceremony, the Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue stressed, the government has issued many policies and regulations to support the development of agricultural sector. Along with this is the effort of farmers and enterprises, which has turned Vietnam from a country importing agricultural products to one of the top agricultural export countries in the world. However, for Vietnam’s agricultural to develop efficiently and sustainably, the Deputy Prime Minister said, it is important to develop agriculture in the direction of mass production, applying high technologies, improving product quality, ensuring food safety; increasing added value and export, which are the foundation for applying industrial revolution 4.0 into agriculture. 

In Vietnam current state of agricultural sector, the Deputy Prime Minister said the nature of the industrial revolution 4.0 is to apply technological achievements in changing the production methods, teleworking on farms, with an aim to optimize production, improving product quality, protecting the environment, improving living standard for farmers. Mr. Vuong Dinh Hue referred to some countries in the world have achieved important results with the application of the industrial revolution 4.0. In the US, Brazil, or Argentina, agriculture 4.0 has reduced up to 50$ of the production cost for corn and soybean. 

In Japan, with only 2 million farmers (contributing to 1.5% of the population of 127 million) with 1.5 million hectares of farms, Japan do not have to import rice, but also to export beef and some vegetables. In Malaysia, the country has applied smart agriculture to support farmers growing red pepper to double the production (+129%). Philippines, from a country of importing more than 2 million tons of corn every year from 5 – 10 years ago, in 2017 has produced above 8 million tons of corn, while the domestic demand is from 5 – 6 million tons, thanks to using new technologies and seedling. As such, the Deputy Prime Minister said, developing agriculture 4.0 is an irreversible trend in the context of deep global integration, thus, Vietnam cannot stay out of this process. 

In order to carry out successfully the agriculture 4.0, the Deputy Prime Minister requested the Forum to identify the current status and shortcomings of Vietnam’s agriculture in the context of globalization; analyzing challenges and difficulties with regard to supporting policies and mechanism to develop high technological agriculture. Besides, representatives also need to identify international experiences on developing agriculture 4.0 and the practical circumstances in Vietnam, especially in applying high technologies in agriculture. Vietnam need to have an overall strategy to develop agriculture, which orients the application of high technologies and agriculture 4.0 development. 
Ngoc Thuy
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