Vietnam imports 1.2 million tons of milk annually

Vietnam imports an average of 1.2 million tons of milk annually, making it one of the top 20 milk-importing countries, said Vu Van Tam, Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, at a seminar to develop the dairy sector.

Milk cows are being raised at the Dairy Demonstration and Experimental Farm in Binh Chanh District of Vietnam Dairy Products Joint Stock Company, the biggest dairy company in Vietnam

Local fresh milk production can currently meet 30 percent of demand; accordingly Vietnam has to import 70 percent.

Each year Vietnam imports approximately 1.2 million tons of different milk types, mainly condensed and recombined milk, but the quality cannot compare with local pure fresh milk.

Paradoxically, recombined milk is sometimes even more expensive than fresh milk.

Currently Vietnam has 184,000 milk cows, providing 420,000 tons of milk. Nguyen Xuan Duong, Head of the Livestock Production Department under the Ministry of Agriculture, said despite increase in milk cows recently, they are raised in separate small farms, and as a result productivity of milk is low and the quality not guaranteed.

Duong proposed setting up a National Dairy Product Committee to control price of milk in which cow farmers will not suffer losses and producers will purchase milk at a reasonable price.

Moreover, Ministries of Agriculture and Rural Development, Industry and Trade, Science and Technology have to increase supervision to ensure correct percentage of fresh milk as stated on product packaging.

By Van Phuc Hau – Translated by Uyen Phuong

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