Biotech Updates

Vietnamese Farmers Visit Demo Fields of New Maize Varieties

January 30, 2019

CropLife Vietnam and the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) jointly organized the workshop program on the Application of GM Crops: Status and Potential Benefits on on November 27, 2018 in An Giang, Vietnam. The program included a visit to demonstation fields of new maize varieties. The program was organized with the aim of providing information and create a venue for local farmers to share their experiences. It was also an opportunity for international experts and representatives of agencies to discuss certain issues to expand the technology towards providing more benefits to farmers.

"Biotechnology application has the potential to increase crop productivity, improve farmers' income, ensure food supply," said Megan Francic, Agricultural Attaché of the US Embassy. It was also mentioned that in 1995-2005, Vietnamese maize adoption of new maize hybrids had spectacular growth wherein the total production quadrupled from more than 1 million tons/year to more than 4 million tons/year. However, the increase in production of less than 5% in recent years has shown that the current hybrids have reached the critical level of productivity. Meanwhile, although the production of maize has increased but still cannot meet domestic demand, maize has always been one of the most imported agricultural products into Vietnam in the last 10 years. Maize import volume has continuously increased from 4.4 million tons in 2014 to 8.3 million tons in 2017. Given the current cultivated land area, the application of new generation maize varieties helps preserve productivity and raise income and will be an important solution for farmers to continue to choose maize as a key crop.

For more information, read the article in Vietnam Biodiversity.