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36,000 ha of coffee sustainably grown in central highlands under VnSAT project

 As of the end of June, the total area of coffee being sustainably grown in the five central highlands provinces exceeded 36,266 ha, a conference held on September 16 on accelerating the progress of the Vietnam Sustainable Agriculture Transformation Project (VnSAT) heard.

The figure represents more than 90.7 percent of the project’s goal of developing 40,000 ha of sustainable coffee plantations.

Co-held by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and the Vietnam Coffee and Cacao Association (VICOFA) in the central highlands province of Gia Lai, the conference heard reports on project progress in the first eight months of this year and plans for the remainder of the year and the extension period from 2021 to 2022.

Under VnSAT’s Component on Supporting Sustainable Coffee Production and Rejuvenation, 185 farmer groups were established and reinforced as of the end of August, 14 percent more than the target of 162, while over 40,000 farming households were given training on how to grow coffee sustainably.

Close to 22,000 farming households have rejuvenated their ageing coffee areas, which cover a total of more than 18,000 ha. A full set of standards on sustainable rejuvenation have been applied on 13,137 ha of coffee in the region, 31 percent higher than the initial goal.

The project has also helped renovate 11 State-run and 21 private nurseries which have supplied to the market about 5.1 million coffee trees on 5,000 ha. Provincial Departments of Agriculture and Rural Development have also licensed 51 more private nurseries.

Provinces in the region have so far disbursed 380 billion VND for the project. The figure includes 280 billion VND (12.06 million USD) from the International Development Association (IDA), 71 billion VND in counterpart funding, and 28 billion VND from the private sector.

In the closing four months of 2020, the project will provide training on sustainable coffee production to more than 6,000 households and on sustainable coffee rejuvenation to 2,000 others.

The VnSAT project has total investment of 301 million USD, including 237.2 million USD in IDA funding. It aims to sustainably farm 69,000 ha of coffee, increase profits from coffee production by 20 percent, support 162 farmer groups, and help the coffee industry in 33 districts and towns across the five central highlands’ provinces improve competitiveness and reduce the environmental impact./.