|Mr. Nguyen Van Long, Deputy Director of the Department of Animal Health, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD).|
In the first 10 months of 2021, despite facing many difficulties due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the export of livestock products still reached about US$359 million, up 6.1% over the same period last year. How do you rate this result?
This achievement is resulted from the direction of the Government, the Prime Minister, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development as well as the implementation of the Department of Animal Health and related units.
For many years, the Department of Animal Health has chaired and coordinated with relevant units to negotiate with other countries to export this group of products. Up to now, Vietnam has been exporting processed chicken to seven markets.
Recently, processed beef from Vietnam has also been exported to South Korea. Not only processed chicken, processed beef but also mature pork, thin pork, poultry eggs have also been exported to a number of markets. Currently, the Department of Animal Health is actively negotiating with other countries to expand export markets for livestock products.
According to the requirements of the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), one of the prerequisites to be able to export meat is to build a disease-free breeding area. How has this been implemented over the years, sir?
Since 2018, the Department of Animal Health has advised leaders of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to sign a cooperation agreement with OIE. On that basis, OIE annually sends technical experts to coordinate and help Vietnam organize the construction of disease-free chains and zones. In addition, the Department of Animal Health also consulted and translated all regulations of OIE and regulations of other countries into Vietnamese. At the same time, localities and businesses are also trained and coached on the requirements of other countries as well as the general regulations of OIE to organize the construction of chains, production of livestock products to meet the export requirements.
Remarkably, the Department of Animal Health has also organized sampling for inspection and evaluation, and prepared relevant documents to promote livestock products and the process of organizing husbandry products in Vietnamto.
Later, OIE will send a delegation to Vietnam to check. When the documents and physical inspection meet the requirements, the OIE will work with the Department of Animal Health to agree on the form of the quarantine certificate to export animal products of Vietnam to other countries.
Regarding specific numbers, at present, Vietnam has more than 2,300 chains and district-level livestock production areas that are safe from disease according to Vietnamese standards as well as many chains and regions that are disease-free according to the world standards. In which, especially in the Southeast region, up to 16 districts of five provinces have achieved disease-free breeding areas. This is the most developed livestock production area of the country. Therefore, it is necessary to ensure the supply of the production and processing of export products.
Promoting existing advantages, in the future, the Southeast is oriented to invest and strongly develop disease-free breeding areas, focusing on increasing processing and exporting. Can you tell us more about this?
For many years, especially in 2015, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has approved and organized the implementation of a pilot project to build disease-free breeding areas in six Southeast provinces. As a result, up to now, 16 districts of five provinces in this region have achieved disease-free status. Currently, following the direction of the Prime Minister, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development continues to direct the Department of Animal Health to develop and submit to the Prime Minister for approval a project to build a disease-free poultry and pig breeding areas according to standards of OIE for export.
Br 2025, the Department of Animal Health has set a target to build poultry disease-free breeding areas of 33 districts and 22 pig-raising districts of six Southeast provinces. There are 60 million poultry in these six provinces alone, which is expected to increase to about 200 million when the chains and enterprises are invested at full capacity. Similarly, the current herd of about six million pigs is expected to increase to 10 million. Thus, Vietnam will have a very large disease-free livestock zone to meet the criteria of OIE and the requirements of other countries, ensuring the supply of livestock products for processing and export.
Currently, Vietnam is not a disease-free country, but is in the process of striving to build large disease-free areas. It is expected that from 2022, the output as well as the export value of livestock products will increase very strongly in 2025.
What recommendations do you have for localities to improve the efficiency of building disease-free breeding areas, and to further promote the export of livestock products in the near future?
The Department of Animal Health suggested that localities focus on implementing control of dangerous diseases approved by the Prime Minister and directed the implementation.
Remarkably, it is necessary to clearly define and strictly organize the instructions on disease prevention and control, especially selecting typical livestock products from the units and the localities which investing in resources, building disease-free zones and chains for export. In addition, it is suggested that localities soon consolidate and strengthen the capacity of veterinary systems at all levels, especially at district and commune levels.
Thank you very much!