Many farmers in northern Hai Phong City, a major farm produce supplier of the now COVID-19 epicenter of Hai Duong Province, have been crying for help as their products could not find buyers due to the recent outbreak.
Currently, farmers in some districts in Hai Phong have seen farm produce prices dropping strongly due to little market demand, according to chairman of Hai Phong Farmers Association Do Duc Hoa.
In several places, no traders have come to buy crops that have been in the harvest time.
In Cap Tien Commune in Tien Lang District, which is famous for winter vegetables, a total area of 35 hectares of such yields as potatoes, cabbages, tomatoes, and chilies has yet to find consumers.
Specifically, three hectares of cabbage ready for harvest have seen demand down by 70 percent while about 130,000 kilograms of tomatoes have left unsold.
Local farmers have suffered falling prices, with cabbage and cauliflower in Tien Lang District priced as cheap as VND2,000-5,000 (US$0.087-0.22) per kilogram. However, they still accept the meager revenues to cover a part of seed and fertilizer costs.
Tomato is sold at even more dirt cheap prices of VND700-1,000 ($0.03-0.043) per kg.
In addition, a large amount of onions, garlic, and eggs is waiting for supportive policies from relevent agencies so as local farmers could avoid hefty losses.
In previous years, these agricultural products were quickly bought by local agricultural cooperatives, in collaboration with enterprises of Hai Duong Province.
But since Hai Duong became a COVID-19 hotbed, with travel restriction in place, the circulation of farm produce has been affected.
|Cabbage and tomato are purchased in support for farmers in Tien Lang District, Hai Phong City, Vietnam. Photo: Bao Long / Tuoi Tre|
Thai Bao Long, a member of a group that buys agricultural products to help people in Tien Lang, shared that in recent days, the group has purchased a part of farm produce there.
However, only the effort of a single group as Long’s is not enough as the number of crops in the harvest time in Hai Phong is still quite large.
Chairman Hoa on Friday said that the Hai Phong Farmers Association had issued a document calling for organizations and individuals to support farmers by consuming some agricultural products being hit by the current COVID-19 outbreak.
The latest wave of infections since January 27 has seen a total of 770 locally-transmitted cases logged in 13 provinces and cities.
Among them, 590 patients have been reported in Hai Duong Province, 60 in Quang Ninh Province, 27 in Gia Lai Province, 35 in Hanoi, five in Bac Ninh Province, two in Bac Giang Province, 36 in Ho Chi Minh City, two in Hoa Binh Province, one in Ha Giang Province, three in Dien Bien Province, six in Binh Duong Province, one in Hai Phong, and two in Hung Yen Province.
The national tally stood at 2,362 COVID-19 cases as of Saturday afternoon, with 1,627 recoveries and 35 deaths, according to the Ministry of Health’s data.