More farmers now have access to the Internet in Ben Tre Province in the Mekong Delta region, which has helped them boost yields and cut costs, according to the Vietnam Farmers’ Association in the province.
Under a project, funded by the association, four communes now have improved access to the Internet, and the association will extend the programme to provide information on cultivating techniques to more communes and later to the entire province.
The project aims to give farmers better access to the latest agricultural and livestock-rearing techniques, prices, intrusion of saline water, weather forecasts and information on a variety of diseases.
The project was launched two years ago in Tan Phong Commune of Thanh Phu District and My Chanh Commune of Ba Tri District.
By the end of 2011, it was extended to Phu Thuan (Binh Dai) and Binh Thanh (Giong Trom) which are the highest rice yielding communes.
A permanent member of staff was employed in each commune to assist farmers with using computers and accessing the Internet, and also to promote the scheme.
Farmers in Ben Tre Province believe that access to the Internet has helped them improve their farming techniques and protect rice crops from pests.
At present, Ben Tre has 30,000 hectares of rice fields with production of an average 360,000 tonnes. Although rice grown in Ben Tre is of good quality, production is lower than in other provinces of the Mekong Delta region.
In addition to the Internet, peasants also have better access to information now, from TV, radio, and newspapers.