Promoting business thinking of farmers

In recent years, many farmers in the Mekong Delta province of Tien Giang have changed their way of thinking and doing, to improve their family's income and create high-added value in the direction of shifting from agricultural production to the agricultural economy.
Promoting business thinking of farmers
Tran Van Hoi’s apple orchard (Tan Thanh commune, Go Cong Dong district) is an attractive tourist destination. (Photo:

These farmers have taken advantage of agricultural products and home-breeding models to attract tourists to visit and shop for homemade products. Profits are tens of times higher than before, Nhan Dan (People) Newspaper has reported.

Creative models

The model of agriculture combined with tourism of Doan Van Khanh in Song Thuan commune, Chau Thanh district, is considered a typical example of changing thinking from agricultural production to agricultural economic thinking.

With an area of over one hectare, Khanh planted more than 200 wax coconut trees interspersed with pomelos, some medicinal plants such as cloves, miracles, and moringa and raised bees as a source of tourism materials.

Khanh designed steel bridges on the top of the coconut trees, forming an overhead transportation system for visitors to personally touch, pick, take souvenir photos and enjoy coconuts, to make a difference and attract tourists. He also designed houses, fences, tables and chairs made from recycled materials, to create a difference.

During the holidays or weekends, Khanh's tourist destination welcomes hundreds of visitors. Visitors can enjoy free entrance, but the price of each coconut picked is 100,000 VND. If a customer wins a wax coconut but does not use it, the garden will buy it back for 200,000 VND.

At the same time, visitors can enjoy rustic garden dishes such as coconut porridge, braised coconut rice, pomelo shrimp salad, coconut, and khot cake, along with clean vegetables grown in the garden.

Dong Nghi agriculture cooperative (Tam Hiep, Chau Thanh district) has a new direction, linking tourism development with agricultural production activities. Cooperative director Le Khac Dong Nghi shared that initially, the establishment invested in raising 500 goats to sell meat, but it was ineffective, due to unstable prices and difficult output.

After that, the establishment boldly sold all the above-mentioned meat goats and bought 300 dairy goats, to process products from goat milk, serve tourists and supply the market.

At 50,000 VND for a ticket, visitors will experience activities such as feeding the goats, walking the goats, bottle-feeding the goats, canoeing on the river, cycling around the orchard, and enjoying the food made from goat milk. Guests who want to enjoy the typical dishes of the village such as grilled fish, braised white fish with pepper, and shrimp, will be served.

According to Nghi, the opening of tourism is to let tourists know and come to buy more goat’s milk products. The entrance fee will cover the cost of labour and feed for the goats. Profits from goat milk products are dozens of times higher than that of meat goats.

Tran Van Hoi's one-hectare apple garden, in Tan Thanh commune, of Go Cong Dong district, is always crowded with visitors, enjoying fruits in the garden, and the rustic dishes of the Southern region.

Hoi said that to enjoy apples right in the orchard with the fresh air, many customers visit the garden and pick the fruits themselves. So, his family decided to invest in and renovate the apple orchard to plant crops, dug a pond for tourists to relax by canoe, and build a bridge over the pond to take souvenir photos.

On average, his apple orchard welcomes 60-100 visitors per day. On holidays and New Year, the number of visitors buying apples, increased nearly ten times compared to weekdays.

In addition to the above models, Tien Giang province also has several points made by farmers Trung Kien cluster (Tan Phuoc), Dien Lan eco-tourism site in Thon Trang (Chau Thanh), Thien An green medicinal plant growing area (Go Cong Tay) and Thao Nguyen orchid garden (My Tho city). These are models that can link agricultural products with tourism, creating high efficiency for the family and the locality.

Encouraging more models

According to Director of Tien Giang province’s Department of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Van Man, Tran Van Hoi's model of apple cultivation, combined with tourism, the model of goat farming for dairy products, and the tourism of Dong Nghi dairy goat farm, is typical in increasing the value of agricultural products.

Farmers have linked agricultural products with tourism, exploiting the potential and available advantages in the locality, solving output for agricultural products, and creating more jobs and income for people.

Moreover, these farmers also created impressive tourism models, connecting tours to tourist destinations, diversifying local tourism types, contributing to the development of the province’s tourism industry, and increasing the value of agricultural products. However, these models are still small, while production and business in the link chain are still limited.

According to Man, in the coming time, the province will continue to guide farmers and create a change in thinking about production and business, aiming at product value rather than output target, moving from single-value growth to multi-value integrated growth, as well as supporting farmers to associate and cooperate in production and using the market as an input signal for production.

Assessing the initial effectiveness, Deputy Director of the Tien Giang Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism Vo Pham Tan affirmed that these are new economic models in the development chain of agricultural tourism products.

These models have brought positive effects, both promoting and creating local output for agricultural products and creating new, attractive and environmentally friendly tourism products, forming a highly competitive value chain, contributing to improving people's living standards and making certain contributions to the local economy, he noted.

For the above models to develop sustainably, the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism will guide localities to support organisations and individuals, in exploiting and developing tourism associated with agriculture; provide short-term training courses on vocational skills and soft skills for tourism at these sites; promote close links between farmers, travel businesses, local authorities, tourism, agricultural and commercial management agencies, in the model of agricultural tourism development.

To change the mindset of agricultural production to a successful agricultural economy, it is necessary to uphold creative and effective ways of thinking, for each citizen, to promote roles and resources in the community for a more prosperous life.

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(Source: VNA)