The Mekong Delta province of Kien Giang has expanded its most efficient rice and aquatic species farming models in the last two years.
Mai Anh Nhin, Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee, said many farmers have switched from growing rice, in case of low yields, to breeding aquatic species.
They have also expanded the model of rotating between rice in the rainy season and shrimp in the dry season on the same fields to enhance their incomes, he said.
The model is particularly suitable for coastal areas since it helps adapt to climate change and rising sea levels.
The province has 92,000ha of rice – shrimp fields, the highest in the delta.
Farmers adopting the model harvest around four tonnes of paddy and 250 kilogrammes of black tiger shrimp per hectare per year.
The province has adopted several efficient shrimp farming models like extensive, intensive, semi-intensive, and two-stage industrial models.
The model of breeding white-legged shrimp in two stages to Vietnamese good agricultural practice (VietGAP) standards adopted in An Minh district for the last two years provides farmers with high incomes and protects the environment.
Juvenile shrimp are first bred in a small pond for a few weeks before being transferred to the main pond at a rate of up to 450 per square metre.
Le Van Khanh, head of An Minh district’s Division of Agriculture and Rural Development, said the success rate of the two-stage shrimp farming model is more than 90 percent and farmers can breed two or three crops a year.
Farmers can earn 150-200 million VND (6,450-8,600 USD) per 500-1,200sq.m pond per crop, he said.
In the coastal areas of U Minh Thuong and the Long Xuyen Quadrangle, farmers have developed the rice – shrimp model to earn high incomes.
The province has researched to develop high-quality rice strains and aquatic breeds.
The province has invested in irrigation systems, including building more sluices to keep out saltwater, to benefit rice and shrimp farming.