Emission-reducing coffee production: Avoid inactivity
thamnguyen99 17-08-2022, 15:10

The Department of Crop Production under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, the Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH) and Institute for Agricultural Environment (Vietnam Academy of Agricultural Sciences) jointly organized a workshop on August 16 in Hanoi with the theme of “Promoting public-private investment in low-emission coffee production: Opportunities and challenges”.

Emission-reducing coffee production: Avoid inactivity

According to Mr. Le Van Duc, Deputy Director of the Department of Crop Production, coffee production and consumption must be reorganized following a value chain. Photo: Trung Quan.

The workshop is a platform to share mechanisms, policies and initiatives in the coffee industry following the development trends of low-emission production as well as to attract public investment in this field. Additionally, the government can consult stakeholders on how to coordinate and integrate resources to promote public-private investment in low-emission coffee production.

Mr. Le Van Duc, Deputy Director of the Department of Crop Production said that Vietnam is one of the main suppliers of raw materials for the major coffee industry in the world. Many concentrated coffee production areas have been established in the Central Highlands (around 94%), while others are set up in the Southeast and Northwest regions.

The coffee industry is currently receiving great attention from state management agencies, associations, businesses, people and many other stakeholders. Various plans and projects to promote development, re-cultivation of coffee, landscape coffee, specialty coffee among others have been issued. As a result, The Vietnamese coffee industry has managed to create high quality varieties with outstanding productivity, competing with coffee from other countries in the world.

However, a new requirement for modern coffee production is the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, so production and consumption activities must be reorganized in linkage with the participation of many stakeholders (state management agencies, scientists, international organizations, enterprises, etc.) This chain of links must be harmoniously organized, closely coordinated towards the common goal that does not affect the production efficiency of farmers, businesses and export activities. Furthermore, the linkage will also improve product value, income and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Ms. Tran Thi Quynh Chi, Program Director of Landscape Asia (IDH) delivering a speech at the workshop. Photo: Trung Quan.

Ms. Tran Thi Quynh Chi, Director of the Landscape Program for Asia (IDH) shared: Low emission is an indispensable requirement for modern production. More than 80% of companies across different industries around the world have committed to reducing emissions and strive to achieve zero-emissions by 2050. Many countries and businesses are actively investing in low-emission agricultural production chains with the ambition of reaching zero-emissions in the future. Therefore, as a global organization promoting public-private cooperation in the fields of sustainable development, IDH will not deviate from that common trend.

According to Ms. Chi, Vietnam is a leading country in cooperating with IDH to effectively deploy landscape coffee, build sustainable coffee development programs, etc. Results from the models show that Vietnam has great potential in reducing emissions in coffee, fruit and pepper production areas in the Central Highlands.

IDH's main goal for the immediate future is that their project will affect 40 to 50% of the coffee, fruit and pepper production areas in the Central Highlands (more than 300,000 ha) by 2025. This is a very ambitious goal, and IDH will not be able to accomplish alone. Therefore, the promotion of public-private partnership is an indispensable requirement for the project implementation.

“Purchasing businesses have made detailed commitments and roadmaps in the pursuit of emission reduction in the production of goods. So even if we do not implement low-emission projects on the basis of public-private cooperation now, development trends and market demand in the future will still force us to do so. Instead of waiting, Vietnam needs to seize the initiative and prepare in advance", emphasized Ms Chi.

Dry crops production and coffee production in particular have not seen specific solutions to reduce emissions. Photo: TL.

Mr. Mai Van Trinh, Director of the Institute for Agricultural Environment under Vietnam Academy of Agricultural Sciences said that reducing greenhouse gas emissions will allow producers to save on 30% of fertilizer, 40% of irrigation water, 80% of labor and electricity in addition to, stable yield, controlled input according to plant needs and growth stage, and many other benefits.

The coffee industry is currently closely connected to the income of people as well as businesses. Accordingly, in order to develop this industry, synchronization between governmental policies, the businesses' activities (technology investment in production and processing, etc.) and the people is a requirement.

However, synchronous implementation require clear and transparent policies from state management agencies, which clearly indicate the duties, rights and responsibilities of each participant and stakeholder. In addition, a connection must be made to the carbon market, creating incentives to stimulate producers and exporters and promote low-emission production to increase product value, increase income from the exchange of carbon certificate.

The majority of the participants at the workship have all agreed that: It is necessary to conduct extensive research projects on reducing emissions in coffee production as previously implemented in rice farming. Subsequently, Vietnam needs to build a database, emission factor, and a roadmap for carbon qualifications and certifications. In addition, it is necessary to calculate carbon based on the commodity chain as well as reach an agreement on the methods, standards and regulations on low emission.

The representatives of the Department of Crop Production, IDH and GCP signing a memorandum of understanding on low emission coffee production. Photo: Trung Quan.

At the workshop, the Department of Crop Production, IDH and GCP signed a memorandum of understanding on low emission coffee production. Accordingly, the three parties will coordinate to implement the following objectives from 2022 to 2025: Building a monitoring and reporting mechanism for greenhouse gas emissions and handing it over to units operating in the coffee industry for reference; documenting low-emissions intervention groups in sustainable coffee production guidelines and other related documents; close consultation with the public and private sectors to develop and agree on low emission production goals, and implementation planning with clearer roles and responsibilities for each of the participant.

Additionally, the parties will promote low-emission production activities in the field including communication, capacity building, building low-emission production models, technical support and advice to farmers and so on.

Author: Trung Quan

Translated by Nguyen Hai Long