Traditionally, agricultural cooperatives in developing countries focus their support solely on agricultural production, often overlooking marketing and trading activities. In many cases, this results in a mismatch between supply and demand and increases the risk of bankruptcy among cooperatives. This is true for many cooperatives in Vietnam, including those from the rural district of Hoa Vang in Da Nang City.
At present, there are 43 agricultural cooperatives in Da Nang, 18 of which are located in Hoa Vang. Their products include rice, vegetables like cucumber, fruits, mushroom, meat, fishes, eggs, sesame, and ornamentals like flowers and bonsai plants. Like many others, these cooperatives do not provide support to its farmer members for trading their produce. Farmers, thus, have to rely on
their own limited capacity to sell their products, usually in the local markets or restaurants. This significantly affects their productivity, as farmers do not feel confident about increasing production. It also affects the cooperatives’ branding because consumers cannot distinguish between local and sustainably produced or clean agricultural products from others. Therefore, it is important to build
the capacities of cooperatives and its farmer members in terms of marketing and trading their agricultural products.
It is in this context that the project titled “Enhancing the Marketing Capacity of Agricultural Cooperatives in Hoa Vang District, Da Nang City of Vietnam” was proposed. The project aimed to increase the income of farmers and ensure food safety for local residents and tourists in Da Nang through the sustainable supply of “clean” agricultural products. Clean products, in the context of this project, pertains to the produce from farmers who practice Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) and do not apply chemical fertilizers or pest control. The outcomes of this project were envisioned to solve not just the current difficulties of cooperatives in HoaVang, but also for agricultural cooperatives elsewhere.