Agriculture ministry advises farmers not to expand pepper planting area

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has advised farmers not to cultivate new pepper plants, transfer into other crops if the plants die of diseases and gradually reduce pepper area to 100,000 hectares.

Farmers harvest pepper
Farmers harvest pepper

At a conference on sustainable pepper production yesterday, minister Nguyen Xuan Cuong said that pepper growing area has tripled to 152,000 hectares, output had also tripled during seven years in 2010-2017.

The too fast development has showed many problems including out of control area and quality and others in farming process and density. Purchase, processing and export organization has not been appropriate to the pepper industry’s value.

While pepper demand increases only 3 percent in the world a year, global area hikes 8 percent to 600,000 hectares from 420,000 hectares in 2013. That has caused price fall to about VND60,000 a kilogram, accounting for half of last year price. It is forecast to remain low in the upcoming time.

Minister Cuong said that the pepper industry would lag behind without restructuring.