According to the Ho Chi Minh City department of Agriculture and Rural Development, 27 households in districts 12, Cu Chi, Hoc Mon, BInh Chanh converted their hog farms into farms to raise mud-free eel in the area of 9,336 square meters.
From 2008, farmers in HCMC has raised eels in ponds made of iron tubes that act as frames and large plastic sheets that act as the cover. Some farmers cover the top of the pond with climbers or dry leaves to create shade and keep the water cool. Farmers also put ferns in the water so that the eels can hide.
However, farmers are facing shortage of breeding eel because they have to buy breeding eel from neighboring countries such as Thailand, Cambodia at high prices.
According to the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, breeding mud-free eel can be commercial success because farmers can make use of oxen shit to raise earthworm as feed for eels. A 6sq.m pond can raise 250 kilogram of eels with investment of VND2 billion a crop in the area of 1,000 sq.m pond.
Relaxing the potential of raising eels, Binh Minh Cooperative established in 2018, raised eels in 464 ponds. Cooperative director Pham Viet Son revealed that it will expand the ponds to 650 in the area of 4,0000 sq.m.
As eels are top choice of people, this is leading to a shortage in supply of eels in the local market.
In order to reduce imported eel, the cooperative is experimenting man-made eels. If successful, it will supply 1.7 million breeding eels, 20 eels weighing 1 kilogram to the market.
There has been no medication for treating sick eels.
Eels are sold in Binh Dien Wholesale Market to transport to the North, the Central and the South East markets from the southern provinces of Dong Nai, An Giang, Vinh Long, Can Tho, Tien Giang, Tay Ninh and HCMC.
Vietnam is one of big importers of eel in the world. Vietnam spent $1.3 million and $9.8 million on buying eels from China, Indonesia and Morocco in 2014 and 2018 respectively. Not only Vietnam but also Japan, South Korea, Spain, Singapore and Canada consume a lot of eels.
This has shown that businesspersons should take heed of local market and export of eels.
The Department of Agriculture and Rural Development in HCMC suggested the government to pay attention to treating wastewater from eel-raising farms and organize training course to farmers as well as researches on breeding eels.