Rice sowing to speed up in North

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development is stepping up all efforts in assisting farmers to complete the sowing of their spring rice crop. The ministry and other concerned authorities in the northern and central regions fear that cold weather conditions could return in late February.

In the north, the Hai Phong City People’s Committee has helped locals with 50 tons of rice seeds and farmers have already cultivated over 20 percent of their fields.

Meanwhile, Vinh Phuc Province has just completed cultivation on 4,000 hectares but had earlier planned to cultivate over 31,000 hectares of rice before the Tet season. The non ending cold spell put all plans on hold.

The province’s administration has spent VND24 billion (US$1.1 million) to help farmers cope with the drought in the spring crop.

Cao Bang Province failed to achieve its target to cultivate over 3,800 hectares of tobacco and 30,000 hectares of maize due to the extreme cold conditions.

The provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development has ordered farmers to take advantage of the warm weather and complete the sowing before February 20.

According to Nguyen Tri Ngoc, head of the Department of Cultivation, many areas in the northern and central regions suffered a shortage of rice seedlings as the cold weather had destroyed vast areas of young rice seedlings.

The department has instructed farmers to prepare more rice seedlings and cover them with nylon cloth to protect them from frost.

By Van Phuc – Translated by Nguyen Mien

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