Profile ‘Growing Out of Poverty with Potato’ project in Vietnam

Who? Fresh Studio is the lead applicant of this FDOV-funded PPP in Vietnam in which it collaborates with PepsiCo, Agrico and Wageningen UR. Fresh Studio is one of the most recognized services firms in Asia for the sourcing and marketing of food. In Vietnam it has four offices, over 100 staff and two R&D farms, one for crops and one for aquaculture. PepsiCo has been producing potato snacks in Vietnam since 2008, and they engage with approximately 300 Vietnamese farmers to locally source potatoes. Agrico is one of the largest producers and distributors of (seed) potatoes in the world, and produces world leading potato varieties, some of which are introduced in Vietnam through the FDOV project. Wageningen UR is involved in the PPP with Applied Plant Research. This is an applied research institute dedicated to knowledge generation and transfer among farmers, the agro-industry and extension services.

What? The project aims to make Vietnam more self-sufficient in potato production by creating a sustainable potato sector that is able to compete with imports, and that can supply the domestic processing industry with a consistent volume and quality offer. As such, potatoes will effectively contribute to the national food security programme of the government. The project wants to have a positive impact on the economic inclusion of the poorest farmers in rural Vietnam, as well as improving the nutritional status of the farmers’ household members. PepsiCo commits to long term secure supply contracts with the farmers. The project aims to be sustainable by reducing environmental pressure and enlarging productivity, in terms of caloric and nutritional value per m2 compared to rice.

Where? The project is being executed in rural areas in the Red River Delta and the Central Highlands of Vietnam.

When? The PPP started in October 2014 and will run until July 2019.

Why? In the past decades, the amount of people in Vietnam living below the poverty line has decreased significantly. However, still 13 million people in Vietnam live on less than one dollar per day. Many of them live in the rural areas of the Red River Delta and the Central Highlands, where the project takes place. More and more Vietnamese include potato in their diets, and the growth in potato demand is expected to further increase. However, currently the Vietnamese potato sector is unable to produce sufficient potatoes. Therefore the project targets the 175,000 small-scale Vietnamese farmers who cultivate potato. At the same time it targets Vietnamese consumers to inform them about the nutritional value of potatoes. Especially young children can benefit strongly from more potato in their diets, compared to rice porridges which are often served for breakfast but which are low in nutrient density.

Want to know more about what this PPP is about? Here you can read the interview with Sigrid Wertheim-Heck (director Marketing and Business Development of Fresh Studio).