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Crop protection

Fertilizers and agrochemicals use in Vietnam

A study by the Netherlands Embassy in Hanoi on the current situation of fertilizers and agrochemicals use in Vietnam and the potential market opportunities for the Dutch businesses.

Viet Nam is an agricultural nation with a natural area of 33.1 million ha in the mainland, ranking the largest 65th in the world. Agricultural land in Viet Nam is 27.3 million ha, of which 42.2% is for agricultural production land, 54.7% is for forestry land and ~3% is water surface area for aquaculture. Agricultural production land is, however, fragmented by small pieces of which almost 70% are less than 0.5ha and 25% are from 0.5-2ha.

The average 2.84% growth rate of agriculture and average 14.5% contribution to GDP in the past 3 years (2018-2020) was done by the labor force of 25% of total labor in Viet Nam ( 2021) taking into account the fact that the labor force of Vietnam accounts for 49.5% of the country’s population.


Viet Nam is divided into 7 agricultural ecological areas from the north to the south. Each ecological area has its own advantages and focuses on certain key commodities like aquaculture, fruits, vegetables, flowers, livestock or industrial crops. Crop production is spreading along the country at a different scale from region to region. There it comes together with the demand for fertilizers and plant protection chemicals.

Over the past 3 years, the number of mineral and organic fertilizers registered has increased tremendously at >500% for organic fertilizer and ~ 50% for mineral fertilizer while the use of plant protection chemicals is in a downtrend, as presented in a conference by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development of Viet Nam late August 2021. The average use in the Mekong River Delta is found higher than the average in the whole country.

Research by An Giang University showed that there is a parallel development of rice production in Viet Nam and the use of active ingredients and trade names of pesticides in the last 30 years. This is also shown by the increasing cost of agrochemicals in rice production. Out of 48.9% of the agrochemical cost in the total rice production cost, around 40% is spent on pesticides and 56% is on fertilizers. For a list of active ingredients allowed in Viet Nam, click here.

Shifts in consumer and market demand for safe produce
Viet Nam is an open and export-oriented economy. Consumer demands, consumption trends, and requirements in importing countries are important factors that steer the development in Viet Nam, speed up the process of awareness and practices by farmers. Moreover, the growth of the middle income and their accelerating spending has led to higher requirements for products (healthy diet, of high quality, organic) but also more responsible awareness about the environment. People generally care more about the environment and the planet they live in when seeing the consequences of climate change, pollutions, and biodiversity loss. This has put the reduction of agrochemical use high on the national and global agenda and gradually turned into practices by governments, businesses and farmers. These have served as key driving factors for changes.

State management
The state management of agrochemicals in Viet Nam has been improved in the last few years. However, challenges remain at different levels: state management, businesses, and farmers’ uses. According to the list published by MARD, there are 503 mono active ingredients that are grouped into pesticides (133 active ingredients), fungicides with 157 active ingredients, and herbicides with 85 active ingredients. A real challenge for state management is the monitoring of cocktailing these mono-ingredients into active groups.

Read the complete research at

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Crop protection

Greenhouse ginger has a stronger flavor than imported ginger

In Belgium, CRU is now offering prime fresh ginger on its markets. It is grown locally and sustainably. It is also cultivated pesticide-free and with a minimum of organic fertilizers. The ginger has a stronger flavor than imported ginger.

Also, its carbon footprint is kept as low as possible. This prime ginger is the result of sustainable innovation. Colruyt Group initiated that in cooperation with the REO cooperative and the Provincial Experimental Centre for Vegetable Production.


As a retailer, the Colruyt Group is becoming increasingly aware of food’s impact on people’s health and the planet. It is constantly working on making its products more sustainable. Then its customers can deliberately make sustainable choices.

In this context, Colruyt Group and its collaborators launched this pilot project to grow fresh prime ginger in Belgium. This is a project of the Colruyt Group’s food innovation team for CRU. The ginger’s environmental footprint is reduced thanks to its local, sustainable cultivation.


Local, sustainable farming
This ginger is grown in a greenhouse at the Provincial Vegetable Research Center. Two REO cooperative growers also cultivate it under a non-heated plastic tunnel and greenhouse, also non-heated. The ginger was planted in mid-May and is harvested in the fall.


The growers used a minimal amount of organic fertilizer and no pesticides during cultivation. Growing locally reduces CO2 emissions, as shorter trips are needed to get the product to end-users. This ginger goes from the field to Belgian plates. This product usually comes from Asia and South America, increasing its carbon footprint.


Fresh, top-quality ginger
The Belgian is harvested when the plant’s foliage is still green, so it has no chance to harden or form a skin. That gives the ginger a distinct aroma and flavor. It is very juicy with no fiber and is fresher than the imported versions.

These tubers are uprooted and washed and can be eaten right away. This top-quality ginger has a limited shelf life. This pilot project’s first crop has both good quality and yield – so it was a success. Scaling it up and further sustainability is, therefore, being evaluated.


Exclusive to CRU
People can now buy this high-quality Belgian ginger for a short while at CRU’s three fresh markets in the country. Then it’s back to waiting for the next harvest. So, CRU clients are the first to get the opportunity to taste this local product.


Ginger is very trendy. Because it is so healthy, more and more people are using this root. It is also ideal for flavoring dishes, in fresh but also in syrup or powder form. Taste and user tests have already confirmed that this Belgian ginger outshines the usual product from Brazil, Peru, and China. The Colruyt Group is therefore proud to market this locally-grown, tasty, ultra-fresh product.


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Crop protection

New research greenhouse for natural crop protection developer

Thorben, in the foreground, at the new facility

Valto received the keys to a greenhouse with 17 departments on the Hoefweg in De Lier, with which director Thorben Looije is taking the next step in his growth ambition.

Valto is a Dutch family business specialising in natural crop protection products. Their best-known product, V10, protects tomato plants against the highly damaging pepino mosaic virus. The research into new, natural crop protection products has so far been done at various locations.

After the imminent modifications to the new greenhouse complex, Valto’s researchers will be able to carry out larger tests on several crops and all in one place, close to the family business’s office at Leehove.

The new research facility fits in with the growth plans of the company, which develops and supplies biocontrol agents. “We believe in the power of nature,” Thorben Looije says. “We develop natural crop protection products to make crops resilient to plant diseases. This is a perfect fit within the goals of a greener Europe, but also those of growers, who also attach importance to health, sustainability and the environment.”

Natural protection
The government uses Green Deals to encourage companies to reduce their impact on the environment. For greenhouse horticulture and agriculture, this means using more natural crop protection. Valto wants to respond to this need by conducting more research and tests and developing new biocontrol agents. The new greenhouse will make this possible in the future.

Innovation in legislation
According to Thorben, a condition for innovation is that legislation innovates too: “Our customers want a healthy harvest and good returns. They ask us to help them prevent diseases in their crops. We are happy to do that with the help of nature, but then the legislation has to be adapted. The approval procedure for natural crop protection products now takes about 8 to 10 years. Fortunately, more and more people in The Hague and Brussels are realizing that legislation must grow along with us if we want to meet the European goals.”

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Crop protection

Innovative strategies for biological control

Year after year, the number of crop protection and chemical products that can be employed to counter pathogens and harmful insects in agriculture gets smaller and smaller. Within that scenario and with the aim of achieving a more sustainable management of resources in line with the objectives of Agenda 2030, biological control using useful predators is the only solution.

It is with this purpose in mind that Agri Impo Tech was established in 2019 as an offshoot of Agri Impol in Battipaglia (Salerno), which boasts thirty years of experience in the preparation of pollination programs using bees and bumblebees.

“What is new in the world of biological control is the possibility of feeding mites and useful insects right after they are introduced. This way, they can develop before the attack of harmful insects. This strategy means useful insects can be launched even if their counterparts are not present yet. Nutrimite, distributed by Agri Impol Tech, has led to excellent results,” reports Antonio Rago, owner of Agri Impol and Agri Impol Tech.

For the past 30 years, Antonio Rago and his company have worked to make agriculture as sustainable as possible developing strategies with a low environmental impact. Agri Impol and Biobest have in fact signed an agreement for the sale and distribution of hives of Flying Doctor bumblebees and of all insects useful for biological control.

“Tuta Trap is a pheromone trap that attracts Tuta absoluta adult males. It can be used to monitor and mass capture parasite lepidoptera. Capturing males, in fact, noticeably reduces infestations dropping them to an acceptable level. 15/20 traps per hectare are needed in greenhouses and 15/25 per hectare in open fields. These can also be combined with color insect traps for monitoring and mass capturing.”

Another objective for the company is making producers understand the importance of pollination, which represents a crucial phase for setting and, therefore, for production.

“Nature alone is not enough to meet pollination needs, this is why we suggest introducing bees and bumblebees during blossoming. We are basically talking about buzz-pollination (especially for tomatoes) carried out by bumblebees, who are more stationary than bees and able to work at lower temperatures and in less-ideal weather (wind and rain). Bees are more suitable for late blossoming.”

“Apipol box has become available this year, i.e a hive containing two bee colonies. It was developed to favor entomophilous pollination in open-field crops and we will showcase it during Macfrut.”

“We will welcome you at Macfrut, stand 111, hall B5 to present our new company established in 2019 – Agri Impol Tech.”

Do you wish to create a pollination program perfect for you or get to know biological control options? The company will welcome you at Macfrut on September 7-9, 2021.

For further information:
Agri Impol s.r.l.
via Milano
84090 Montecorvino Pugliano (SA) -Italy
+39 0828 53744
+39 0828 507182

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