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If workers are not vaccinated quickly, seafood and vegetable exports will face difficulties

19:13 | 08/08/2021

VCN - The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development proposes to implement the National Rice Purchase and Reserve program to ensure food security, helping to stabilize the rice market; at the same time, facilitating and prioritizing Covid-19 vaccination for workers at aquatic product processing factories, livestock, slaughterhouses are implementing the "3 on-site" model.

If workers are not vaccinated quickly, seafood and vegetable exports will face difficulties
Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Tran Thanh Nam speaks at the meeting

Buying and storing rice for peace of mind

On August 3, 2021, at an online meeting on the production and connection of agricultural supply of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Tran Thanh Nam, Head of Working Group 970 (Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development), proposed Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Le Minh Hoan proposed to the Government to implement the national program of purchasing and storing rice so that farmers can rest assured in production as well as stimulate production demand in the autumn-winter crop.

"The amount of summer-autumn rice is very high, if there is no timely policy, many people will profit and farmers are disadvantaged. Therefore, the Working Group proposed the Minister to propose the Government to adopt a policy of purchasing and storing summer-autumn rice under the national reserve program. At that time, the market will be stimulated, rice prices will improve, farmers will be motivated to harvest the autumn-winter rice crop," said Deputy Minister Tran Thanh Nam.

Notably, according to Deputy Minister Tran Thanh Nam, there are now farmers hesitant in sowing the autumn-winter rice crop. If the purchase and demand for summer-autumn rice market is not improved, it will affect the whole year's rice production as set out by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

Agreeing with Deputy Minister Tran Thanh Nam, Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Phung Duc Tien also said: "It is necessary to purchase and reserve summer-autumn rice to stimulate the production of autumn-winter and winter-spring crops to ensure growth.”

Le Thanh Tung, Deputy Director of the Department of Crop Production (Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development), said that currently, the Mekong Delta provinces have only harvested 600,000 hectares of summer-autumn rice, and about 900,000 hectares will be harvested in August 2021 and September 2021. This is also the time with the highest production of commodity rice.

Vaccinate farmers that harvest vegetables, fruits and aquatic products

Besides rice purchasing and stockpiling, the issue that received a lot of attention in the meeting this morning was vaccinating the fishing workers as well as harvesting vegetables.

If workers are not vaccinated quickly, seafood and vegetable exports will face difficulties
Exploiting and processing aquatic products for export will face many difficulties if the Covid-19 vaccine is not promptly given to factory workers. Photo: Q.Hieu

According to Tran Dinh Luan, Director of the General Department of Fisheries (Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development), the seafood industry in many localities is facing difficulties. Currently, there are 14 ports with F0 cases that have to stop operating. In 19 southern provinces that are under Directive 16, many ports are operating with difficulty.

With ports stopped, fishing boats have to go to another province, increasing the cost for fishermen. Meanwhile, the receiving ports are also over capacity, some ports have to send more forces.

"It is recommended to give priority to vaccination for those working in the fishing port area," Luan said.

In addition, the leader of the General Department of Fisheries added that there are many seafood processing factories with a large number of workers. The enterprise asked the locality to find a place for workers to stay, and asked the local Center for Disease Control (CDC) to support medical guidance to maintain production, but did not receive support. Many businesses report that they are falling into a very difficult situation.

Le Thanh Hoa, Deputy Director of the Department of Agricultural Product Processing and Market Development (Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development), said that from the perspective of fruit and vegetable exports, the Mekong Delta is the main supplier of high-quality tropical fruits for export. The Mekong Delta region is separated for another two weeks, meaning the harvesting of fruit for export faces many problems.

“The localities have reported that they do not allow farmers to collect the fruit. For export companies, such as Chanh Thu Company, it is quite difficult to organize the collection. If not vaccinated early, it will be very difficult for the team to collect fruit for export," said Hoa.

Leaders of the Department of Agricultural Product Processing and Market Development also assessed that, with aquatic products, if the vaccination problem is not solved quickly, the stage of exploitation, purchasing and transporting from the farming unit to the factory will also be affected.

“The Government and localities should soon have better solutions to solve these problems in the near future. Otherwise, both fruit and aquatic product exports will face difficulties in the future," said Le Thanh Hoa.

By Thanh Nguyen/ Huu Tuc