Mr. Nguyen Phuoc Tho, 61, a participant of the Improving the Livelihood of Vulnerable Families in the Mekong Delta project (VN7535) in 2013, is also the leader of Dai Ten Vegetable Production Collective in Luong Hoa A commune, Chau Thanh District, Tra Vinh Province. The collective was established at the beginning of 2013 by 27 households.
Every member must attend a monthly meeting for information on prices of inputs and outputs, sharing experiences of planting vegetables and contributing USD2.30 per family to their collective savings. Every three months, five to six members take loans from the saving for vegetable production. The collective’s 7.5 hectare of land produced three tons of vegetables a day at the beginning.
Tho said, “Thanks to the Heifer project, my self-help group members and I had a chance to broaden our knowledge in animal husbandry, vegetable planting techniques and values-based holistic community development, and we have cows to raise to improve our income. We also take advantage of cow manure to fertilize vegetables and fruit trees. This saves us a lot of money to buy chemical fertilizer.”
Many vegetable seed companies have offered quality seeds at lower prices and extended payment to after they harvest and sell their crops. At present, there are 61 members owning 17.5 hectare of land and supplying 10 tons of vegetable a day at the beginning of rainy season in June and 6 tons a day in the remaining months of the year. On average one household can make a profit of USD2,015 a year from planting vegetables. The collective also creates jobs for 15 members to work as hired laborers for an income of $6.40 per day per person.
Story by Tran Huu Ly
Senior Planning, Monitoring & Evaluation Officer