While many localities are focusing on agricultural development, many people in Thanh Hoa Province have been turning their backs on farming.
Tien Loc Commune in Hau Loc District has nearly 18 hectares of farming land left unused. Over recent years, many households in the commune have moved to the locality’s traditional forge industry which has seen strong development.
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Also, many people have turned to other kinds of work as farming only gives them a very modest income. Many have moved to other localities such as HCM City or Hanoi to look for jobs.
Kieu Van Tu in Ngo Village, Tien Loc Commune, said his family has four people with around 1,440 square meters of farming land between them. However, the very small income from farming work is not enough to feed the family on a daily basis. His parents had to go to Nghe An Province to work as hired forgers, leaving their farming land unused.
Another resident, Nguyen Thi Thu, who has just started to work for IVORY Garment Factory said, ” average production per crop from every 360 square meters of farming land is 300 kilos of rice. After deducting expenses for ploughing, fertiliser, pesticides and some other things, the profit is just VND100-200,000 (USD4.76-9.52). If production is less than 300 kilos, farmers will suffer losses. Meanwhile, being a worker can bring a monthly salary of VND2.5-3 million.”
Hoang Van Dong, Chairman of Tien Loc Commune People’s Committee, admitted that the situation is difficult, adding that it is the poor economic efficiency of farming work that has discouraged farmers.
Despite efforts made to encourage farmers to continue focusing on agricultural activities, the situation has not improved much because they are not interested in farming anymore.
Nguyen Thi Lien, Head of Hau Loc District’s Department for Agricultural and Rural Development, said agricultural production depends so much on factors relating to weather and insects. Besides, prices of fertilisers and pesticides are on the rise, while prices of farm produce are decreasing.
“We will take back farming land left idle and give it to households who have the desire to farm, or who will turn it into a model of a fish-raising farm, or start paddy cultivation in line with the new rural development programme,” Lien noted.