Salt producers need to adopt new technologies, diversify products and push promotion to grow the industry sustainably, experts say.
Vietnam has a number of advantages in salt production, including a 3,200km coastline and favourable natural conditions, but is affected by small-scale and scattered production and a lack of industrial methods, which affect quality and productivity.
Besides, the low incomes it fetches mean the salt production area fell to just 11,000ha last year from 13,160ha in 2017, according to the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.
Producers have switched to aquaculture and other occupations, leaving many salt farms abandoned.
Only 14 out of the 73 salt production facilities in the country have adopted technology and industrial methods, which has led to a decrease in production capacity.
Extreme competition in the global market and insufficient funding prevented many of them, including his, from growing, said Pham Thanh Chuong, director of Thanh Chuong Iodine Salt Trading Production Co Ltd.
Ho Xuan Vinh, director of ABACA Vietnam Co Ltd, said on the other hand, some had adopted hi-tech methods to make a variety of products, such as naked and low-sodium salts, only to see consumers unable to differentiate between the two.
To build an efficient salt industry, it was necessary to tap the full potential of production areas, improve productivity and quality, and diversify products to meet consumers’ needs in the local and export markets, Le Duc Thinh, head of the department, said.
Vinh said the Agriculture and Rural Development Ministry should be a channel to connect enterprises with cooperation opportunities to develop a sustainable value chain and ensure steady incomes for farmers, promote the industry’s products and set standards and guidelines to enhance quality.
Source: The Star