Sowing a bright future for economic development and women’s empowerment in Son La province, Vietnam through high-quality seedlings and greenhouse vegetables almost completed!

End 2019 Fresh Studio together with the project consortium Applied Horticulture Research, Royal Brinkman, BVB-Substrates, Semillas Fito and Gautier Semences started to identify 13 female farmers willing to investment in a plant nursery or vegetable production greenhouse in Son La province.

This was not an easy task as greenhouse production is relatively new in Son La province, but in 2019 5 female farmers had enough trust to join the project and the first plant nurseries and greenhouses were established. These plant nurseries and greenhouses were very well received and with their quality and design set a new standard. The first build nurseries and greenhouses in combination with the technical support by our local team of agronomist made it easier to earn the trust of more female farmers to join the project and invest themselves in a plant nursery or vegetable production greenhouse.

Today the project objective of realizing 8 plant nurseries and 5 vegetable production greenhouses has been realized with the final construction work completed. The work of the project now continues in the coming weeks, with training of farmers, field days to share knowledge and technologies and continues coaching and technical support through our local team or agronomists based in Moc Chau and Hanoi.  Rene van Rensen – Managing Partner / R&D Director crops was able to visit all location during is recent visit to Moc Chau, Van Ho and Mai Son.

Rene van Rensen: “It is really exciting to see how dedicated and proud the nursery and greenhouse owners are to produce seedlings and vegetables. It makes me very proud to see the progress they are making to work in a professional way and our team of Fresh Studio to realize all successfully! We can see already the positive impact this project has on developing a professional horticulture sector in Son La province in which women are in the lead. 

Through the plant nurseries local farmers have now access to high quality seedlings and improved and new varieties and through the vegetable production greenhouses local farmers learn how to extend their production season, produce vegetables they could not grow before, increase the yield and quality of their crops all in compliance with VietGAP to ensure food safety.

It gives us great pride to make knowledge and technologies available for the farmers in Son La so they have a bright future ahead!

For more information regarding the project contact:

René van Rensen

Managing Partner / R&D Director Crops

Fresh Studio

rene.van.rensen@freshstudio.vn

For more information regarding the GREAT program see: http://equality.aus4vietnam.org/

Dutch Horticulture Open House event: completion TF Horti Dalat project

The Transition Facility (TF) project “Accelerating the development of modern greenhouse vegetable production in Vietnam”, supported by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign affairs started in 2014 in Lam Dong province. This project is coming to a close. To highlight the innovations introduced and celebrate the achievements a Dutch Horticulture Open House was organized at the R&D farm of Fresh Studio in Dalat.

The first ever Dutch Horticulture Open House was a huge success with over 300 attending farmers. Greenhouse technologies used within the project were exposed and demonstrated to farmers and project partners during the event. The Open House provided ample opportunities for networking and discussions. Also, the six pilot farmers, whom invested in imported greenhouses, were put into the spotlight.

The following results clearly show that this project contributed to the accelerated development of modern greenhouse production in Vietnam and has created a foundation to further introduce Dutch greenhouse technologies in Vietnam:

  • > 720 farmers trained in modern greenhouse production
  • 6 Modern greenhouse established with 6 pilot farmers
  • 4 vegetable brands created
  • 3 Training manuals developed
  • Successful commercial introduction of various new inputs
  • Next disbursement of loans of 300,000 EUR to invest in modern greenhouse production in preparation

These results would not have been achieved without the contribution and support of all the project partners. We are grateful for this cooperation and look forward to see you all during the next Horticulture Open House at our R&D farm in 2018.

Photo impression of Dutch Horticulture Open House

This development is a result of the collaboration with project:

Accelerating a modern greenhouse vegetable production sector

Modern greenhouse vegetable production can provide an innovative solution to meet the fast growing demand for high quality, safe and sustainable produced vegetables, which are year round available …

Three more milestones achieved in modern greenhouse vegetable production sector in Vietnam

3 significant accomplishments in the Transition Facility project “Accelerating the development of a modern greenhouse vegetable production sector in Vietnam”, including the first harvest of tomatoes and sweet peppers produced at the six pilot farms, the development of a market brand name and logo for each pilot farmer, and the start of training 720 farmers in modern greenhouse technology.

Also, positive reactions from all the guests visiting the Fresh Studio R&D Farm. They were all impressed with the tomato crop in the new greenhouse with automatic irrigation and climate control.

After planting the first crops in August, the Transition Facility project is in full swing and the first crops are looking promising to deliver good results.

Since 4 months, the 6 pilot farmers are now using their greenhouse and are very satisfied. Strong winds and heavy rain did not result in any problem. At the Fresh Studio R&D farm, irrigation and climate (including screening) control for the pilot greenhouse is currently managed fully automatic which is resulting in stable growing conditions. The first tomatoes (end of October) and sweet pepper fruits (November) were harvested with excellent quality. With over 2 kg per plant in the first tomato production, the yield target has also been achieved.

To strengthen the sales position of the products produced by the pilot farmer, a student from Van Hall Larenstein completed a research regarding packaging possibilities for tomato and sweet pepper in Vietnam. Advice was provided regarding the packaging options to the pilot farmers.

To distinguish the products in the market a brand name and logo was designed per pilot farmer by Fresh Studio’s Marketing & Business Development team.

Furthermore, next to the production manual for sweet pepper the first Vietnamese tomato production manual was completed. With over 200 slides, the current training manuals for sweet pepper and tomato includes a lot of useful information. Nevertheless, training manuals should be constantly updated and improved.

As part of the project, 8 field days have been organized so far. During these days, a total of 150 sweet pepper farmers and 156 tomato farmers have been trained in sweet pepper and tomato production with modern greenhouse technology. The farmers appreciated the training materials and the opportunity to visit the pilot greenhouses in order to see, experience and discuss the application of modern greenhouse technologies at their own farm.
Certainly there is much interest of farmers to learn more about and to use modern greenhouse technologies. Therefore, it is expected that these training activities will contribute to accelerated adoption of modern greenhouse vegetable production techniques by Vietnamese farmers.

This development is a result of the collaboration with project

Accelerating a modern greenhouse vegetable production sector

Modern greenhouse vegetable production can provide an innovative solution to meet the fast growing demand for high quality, safe and sustainable produced vegetables, which are year round available …

First milestones achieved for the development of a modern greenhouse sector

With the completion of 6 modern greenhouses an important milestone is achieved as part of the Transition Facility project “Accelerating the development of a modern greenhouse vegetable production sector in Vietnam”. Sweet pepper and tomato crops are planted and the first harvest is expected in October. The greenhouses will be used to train >700 farmers in modern greenhouse vegetable production.

The completion of 6 modern greenhouses is the result of a lot of preparation and efforts of various project partners and the 6 selected pilot farmers. Although this is a real milestone, the project activities don’t stop here. The next phase of the project involves the actual production in the greenhouses and knowledge dissemination activities towards farmers. Regular updates regarding the crop status and production results will be provided in future project updates.

Access to finance

To enable the pilot farmers to make the investment in modern greenhouse vegetable production the Rabobank Foundation signed an agreement with Sacombank to provide the 6 pilot farmers with a loan to finance their investment in the modern greenhouse hardware and the initial operational costs. After obtaining approval from the State Bank of Vietnam the loans were disbursed to the pilot farmers in April 2015.

Greenhouses

At Fresh Studio’s R&D farm a multi-span greenhouse (CMF ESPACE 9.60 M) with automatic ventilation and screening (SVENSSON XLS 50 F HARMONY REVOLUX) is installed. At the other 5 pilot farms a multi-span greenhouse (CMF ESPACE 9.60 M) with fixed ventilation is installed.

Climate control and irrigation

A climate control and irrigation system (PRIVA NUTRIFIT and MAXIMIZER) is installed at the Fresh Studio’s R&D farm to operate the new greenhouse. This system will also be used to collect climate data for the project partners.

Giá thể trồng cây

Grow slabs (with a mix of cocopeat, peatmoss and perlite) from BVB-substrates are imported to be used as substrate by the pilot farmers.

Varieties

5 pilot farmers decided to grow tomatoes (beef, normal, cocktail and cherry) and 1 pilot farmer decided to grow sweet pepper (red and yellow). The varieties planted are from Rijk Zwaan.

Fertilizer

YARA Vietnam made arrangements to enable the pilot farmers to buy the Kristalon fertilizer range.

Training materials

The first version of Vietnamese sweet pepper and tomato training materials is completed. For NFT lettuce, training material is being developed. Farmer training activities will start in September 2015.

Knowledge development

As a spinoff of this project a proposal to develop a practical knowledge and training institute that supports the development of the Vietnamese agrifood sector towards a sustainable, healthy and upgraded industry, through sharing knowledge and skills in the production-, postharvest- and distribution stages of the supply chain was submitted by HAS Hogeschool and granted by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation. The name of the project is Fresh Academy Vietnam.

This development is a result of the collaboration with project:

Accelerating a modern greenhouse vegetable production sector

Modern greenhouse vegetable production can provide an innovative solution to meet the fast growing demand for high quality, safe and sustainable produced vegetables, which are year round available …

Vietnamese vegetable growth in modern greenhouses

Vietnams’ population consists of approximately 90 million people. Vegetables play an important role in their daily meals. Within the pilot-project Horti Dalat, Dutch companies are supporting the Vietnamese horti-sector with the development of modern greenhouses vegetables production.

The rapid growth of the Vietnamese population and pace and scope of retail development results in a high demand for quality products, food safety, stable supply and sustainable vegetable production.

In the Dutch article ‘Vietnamese groente gaat de kas in’, Flip van Koesveld and Huub Schepers of Applied Plant Reseach (Wageningen UR) discuss the vegetable production transition in Vietnam; from ‘outside’ to ‘inside’. For Vietnamese farmers it is smart choice to produce vegetable in greenhouses: “Shortly there are 3 reasons: less plant diseases, a reduced amount of fertilizer and higher yields. Greenhouses for vegetable production keep many issues ‘outside’ while the yield is increasing”.

Fresh Studio is, according to Van Koesveld, an important player in the chain. The company supports and creates breakthrough innovative interventions in the Asian food sector. “Fresh Studio plays a central role. We can give input how Vietnamese farmers should produce vegetables, but we do not speak their languages. For this, you need a strong local partner. One who can train farmers and who continues the project after finishing in 2016.”

+ Read the complete article (Language: Dutch)

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Source: Rijksdienst voor Ondernemend Nederland

Publication date: July 2014

Manual: Greenhouse sweet pepper production

Greenhouse sweet peppers are primarily grown in three colours: green, red and yellow. No matter what the final colour of the pepper, all sweet peppers start out green in colour and the final colour develops as the fruit ripens.

In general the price of red and yellow sweet pepper is higher than green sweet pepper, making it more profitable to harvest sweet peppers grown in a greenhouse red or yellow. The sweet pepper plants can be kept in production from 4 – 8 months depending on the variety and production system used. Most farmers in Vietnam try to grow a sweet pepper crop for one year.

+ Sweet pepper production VNE (530 KB)

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Source: Fresh Studio

Language: Vietnamese

Publication date: April 2012Also interesting to read:

Manual: Greenhouse vegetable production

Vegetable cultivation started in the open field and for a large number of crops is still the preferred option. Especially when comparing financial inputs and outputs.

In some regions or during some seasons it is however difficult to grow certain vegetable crops, due to the climate conditions. In order to still produce these corps “out of the season” protective houses, which protected the crop from the environmental conditions were made. With better quality and production methods for glass and plastic these first proactive houses evaluated to the current moderns greenhouse structures. In the most modern greenhouse structures the climate inside is completely controlled automatic by computers. Greenhouse production in Vietnam and especially in Lam Dong province is expanding fast. First mainly bamboo greenhouses were used, but more and more steel structures are being built currently. In this manual we like to highlight some important point to consider when selecting which greenhouse to build.

+ Cultivation in greenhouse VNE (203 KB)

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Source: Fresh Studio

Language: Vietnamese

Publication date: April 2012

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Banner: Greenhouse sweet pepper production

Optimal stem density, pruning strategy and harvesting method for greenhouse sweet pepper production.

+ Banner VF Sweet pepper production VN (422 KB)

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Source: Fresh Studio

Language: Vietnamese

Publication date: April 2012

Also interesting to read:

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