Report on completion of Smart Farming project – Technology application in agricultural production

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(TVU) – On August 19th, 2019, the Management Board of Smart Farming Project of Tra Vinh University organized a workshop to report the completion of the project in 3 provinces of Tra Vinh, An Giang and Can Tho. Ms. Thach Thi Dan, the Vice Rector of Tra Vinh University took part at the meeting.

In the workshop, there were the attendances of Mr. Cao Thang Binh, Senior Expert on Rural Development, representative of World Bank (WB); Dr. Diep Thanh Tung Director of Economic – Law School of Tra Vinh University, Head of Project Management Board, together with experts, scientists, representatives of the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, VNSAT Project Management Boards of Mekong Delta region, cooperatives and more than 20 farmers.

At the workshop, Mr. Pham Vu Bang – Tra Vinh University, a member of the Project Management Board gave a presentation on “Study on feasibility to improve the efficiency of water use in irrigated rice through the implementation of smart sensors”.

Accordingly, the research team applied IoT AWD technology, the techniques of alternate drying and flooding for pilot rice paddies in agricultural co-operatives in 3 provinces of Tra Vinh, An Giang and Can Tho, aiming to reduce costs, production costs and to change perception of households in agricultural cultivation whose main object is wet-rice.

Mr. Pham Vu Bang said: “After two years of pilot implementation of the project, initially IoT AWD technology has achieved some goals set such as: 93% of farmers confirmed that IoT AWD technology help reduce irrigation water compared to traditional way of watering; 80% of households save on pumping costs; 86% of farmers confirmed that IoT solutions help save time and labor, …
Besides, IoT AWD technology application also helps increase rice productivity in each crop”. He also shared that IoT AWD technology can be replicated in provinces in VNSAT project area – in sustainable agricultural transformation project in Vietnam – in Mekong Delta provinces.

During the discussion, many comments were made by representatives of the provincial Departments of Agriculture and Rural Development around topic of the workshop.

Mr. Doan Ngoc Pha, Deputy Director of VNSAT Project Management Board of An Giang proposed to support equipment for farmers in some typical cooperatives in the provinces, so that the farmers could see the efficiency and economic problems, from there they can replicate model. As above, the representative of Department of Agriculture and Rural Development of Can Tho city also recommended to the Smart Farming Project Management Board of Tra Vinh University to improve so that IoT technology could not only use at water pumping in the fields but also analyze insect pest situation on rice field.

Dr. Nguyen Thai Son, Deputy Director of the Engineering and Technology School of Tra Vinh University, member of the Project Management Board also shared: “The Management Board is researching to improve equipments to reduce investment and operating costs and to integrate some application functions on rice paddies which are combining of rice and shrimp farming ”.

Representatives of the World Bank (WB), Mr. Cao Thang Binh also suggested: “Firstly, after ending the project, it is necessary to maintain equipment in the rice paddies for farmers to continue using. Secondly, it is necessary to study and propose a cooperation plan between the Smart Farming Project Management Board of Tra Vinh University and the VNSAT Project Management Board in the provinces to support farmers for effective farming. Thirdly, the Smart Farming Project Management Board of Tra Vinh University should develop the IoT system more, not only stop at water pumping and draining in rice paddies but also perform on vegetables, aquaculture ponds, etc.”

Dr. Diep Thanh Tung said: “Smart Farming project aims to help farmers improve the efficiency of wet rice production so it is necessary to support equipment for farmers, the project management board will study and support the farmers from co-operative to borrow equipment for demonstration and model replication. At the same time, the Project Management Board is also looking forward to cooperating with VNSAT projects in the Mekong River Delta provinces in the future “.

Ms. Thach Thi Dan, the Vice Rector of Tra Vinh University affirmed that: “The success of this project is thanks to all support of agencies and individuals who have facilitated the Management Board of Smart Farming Project of Tra Vinh university. The goal of Tra Vinh University is to support community development in Tra Vinh province in particular and the Mekong Delta region in general. Smart Farming project has great significance, helping farmers to apply new technology solutions to production, adapting to climate change and complicated developments of the weather, contributing to increase productivity of harvested rice, and romoting the agricultural development”.

MN