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AI to Modernise Agriculture in Vietnam

The government held a workshop outlining how the implementation of artificial intelligence (AI) can have a crucial impact on the advancement of contemporary and sustainable agriculture. It can aid in the automation and optimisation of farming practices, including but not limited to weather prediction, monitoring of plant and livestock health, and enhancing product quality.

Chairman of the General Council of Agriculture and Rural Development of Vietnam Ho Xuan Hung noted that the prevalence of AI-powered equipment and machinery is increasing in today’s technological age, including in agriculture.

He noted explained how AI can help improve crop productivity and control pests, diseases, and cultivation conditions. It can improve the performance of farming-related tasks across food supply chains. Farmers worldwide are applying AI to minimise the impacts of chemical use on the environment. Advancements in the manufacturing of AI-controlled robots are assisting farmers in utilising less land and labour while simultaneously boosting production output.

Although the application of AI in agriculture is relatively new in Vietnam, it has drawn the interest of both the government and businesses because of its superiority over conventional farming practices. An official from the Vietnam Institute of Digital Economy Development explained that the importance of AI to the development of modern agriculture is undeniable. It can help farmers increase productivity, reduce production costs, improve product quality, ensure food safety, and forecast and reduce climate and disease risks. This means less fertiliser, pesticides and negative impacts on the environment overall.

However, the high cost of hardware and software for AI systems remains a significant obstacle for farmers in Vietnam. Additionally, farmers require training to effectively use the new technology. To address these issues, relevant stakeholders such as technology producers, the government, and agricultural organisations must collaborate to develop affordable AI applications that meet the needs and market demands of farmers.

However, high prices for both hardware and software of AI systems pose a challenge for farmers. Furthermore, farmers also need the training to use new technology while relevant parties, including technology producers, the government, and agriculture organisations, need to cooperate in developing suitable AI applications to meet farmers’ conditions and demands in the market.

According to Nguyen Quoc Toan, Director of the Centre for Informatics and Statistics at the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, there are other obstacles to digital transformation in agriculture, including limited awareness and regulations surrounding the use of technology in the field. Without clear regulations and guidelines, non-compulsory applications are unlikely to be widely adopted and utilised in practice.

To promote digital transformation, including the adoption of AI in agriculture, Toan suggested that it is essential to increase awareness among farmers and businesses, provide guidance on digital production processes, develop digital infrastructure, enhance cybersecurity measures, and establish a comprehensive database for the sector. These efforts would help pave the way for more efficient and effective use of technology in agriculture, ultimately leading to increased productivity and sustainable growth.

To enable digital transformation in the sector, last August, the Farmers’ Association of Hung Yen City, in coordination with the city’s Post Office, organised training sessions on e-commerce and how to put agricultural products on sale on digital platforms. The sessions coached 60 cadres and association members in the locality.

Participants were guided on how to download and register on the postmart.vn platform, and use the Postmart mobile app to create accounts, process orders, and handle complaints. The training session also promoted the benefits of selling agricultural products via e-commerce.

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