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IRRI and MARD launch technical guidelines and manual for sustainable rice production

The International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) and the Department of Crop Production (DCP) - Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) launched the co-developed Technical Guidelines and Manual for High-Quality and Low-Emission Rice Production in the Mekong Delta in a workshop in An Giang Province. The guidelines and manual will be the main sources for the implementation of the  "Sustainable Development of One Million Hectares of high-quality and low-emission rice associated with Green Growth in the Mekong River Delta by 2023", also known as the 1 Million Hectares Program.

IRRI also signed cooperation agreements with the Vietnam Rice Sector Association to collaborate in various activities such as convening and organizing multi-stakeholder value chain workshops to strengthen PPP and contributing to the related policy and joint activities supporting the 1-million-ha program.

In his remarks, Dr. Tran Thanh Nam, Deputy Minister of MARD, emphasized IRRI and DCP’s collaboration and expertise in delivering the resources that will be very instrumental to the successful implementation of the program.

Mr. Le Thanh Tung, Deputy Director for South of DCP, shared that the One Million Hectares Program aims to enhance the value and sustainability of the rice industry, boost production and business efficiencies, improve the income and livelihoods of rice producers, particularly smallholder farmers, protect the environment, adapt to climate change, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Dr. Nguyen Van Hung shared that the technical guidelines and manual cover a series of topics, including farming techniques, harvest management, post-harvest handling, straw management, and trends in the development and application of digital technology in agriculture, among others. He stressed that the resources “cover all stages of rice production, linked and unified together to form a complete and synchronous system applied to rice production in the area of the One Million Hectares Program.”

Dr. Joanna Kane-Potaka, Deputy General Director of IRRI, congratulated DCP and IRRI Vietnam Office colleagues for bringing out decades of science through these technical resources. She underlined three imperatives that govern IRRI, including farmer prosperity, environmental protection, and nutritious rice, which strongly align with the program's goals.

Dr. Cao Duc Phat, chair of the IRRI Board of Trustees, commended this strong step of Vietnam and proudly recognized the program as the first of its kind – to produce high-quality rice while reducing emissions. He acknowledged the support of MARD, local government agencies, and international organizations, and called for the support of the relevant stakeholders, including private enterprises for the effective implementation of the program.

Various stakeholders attended the event, including officials and representatives from MARD and its attached agencies, Departments of Agriculture and Rural Development from the 12 provinces in the Mekong Delta, international organizations, academe, private sector, farmers’ groups, cooperatives, and media.