17 May 2022, VN: The project aims to ensure small-scale farmers in the Central Highlands of Vietnam, particularly women and ethnic minorities, have more secure and resilient livelihoods for food, nutrition, and water security.
Dr. Nguyen Do Anh Tuan, Director General of the International Cooperation Department, Director of PSAV Secretariat – MARD, Monica Bauer, Vice President Corporate Affairs – PepsiCo Inc , Gloria D. Steele, Chief Operating Officer – CARE are signing the MOU.
At the US-Vietnam Agri-Business Dialogue event organized by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development – MARD of Vietnam on the sidelines of the US-ASEAN Special Summit, a special Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between Partnership for Sustainable Agriculture in Vietnam (PSAV), the National Agriculture Extension (NAEC), and CARE, paving the way forward for the rollout of the “Farming for Change – She Feeds the World” project in Vietnam (SFtW Vietnam).
The Central Highlands in Vietnam is a major agricultural hub, producing key food crops. However, the agricultural system in the region faces serious environmental, economic, and societal issues, including unsustainable agricultural practices and weak market linkage. The overuse of pesticides, fertilizers, and water resources is lowering the productivity of the land. This is further exacerbated when farmers sell their products to local collectors who have limited bargaining power, earning them lower incomes. This particularly impacts women and people from ethnic minorities.
The SFtW Vietnam seeks to address these issues by enhancing farmers’ capacity to adopt more sustainable agricultural practices, improving agricultural yields and productivity, and increasing women farmers’ access to and control over productive resources. This, in turn, will contribute to the transformation of discriminatory social and gender norms and facilitating greater access to markets.
The project will contribute to advancing gender equality in the agriculture sector, particularly in the second phase of the National Targeted Program on New Rural Development.
SFtW Vietnam is an extension of PepsiCo-CARE’s global ‘She Feeds the World’ program, which has been rolled out in multiple countries. The program is part of a broader effort by CARE and the company to help build more sustainable food systems, by empowering women in its agricultural supply chain, leveraging PepsiCo’s Sustainable Farming Program which is currently active in 38 countries.
Mr. Sudipto Mozumdar, General Manager, Indochina Foods Business Unit, PepsiCo Services Asia Limited said “She Feeds the World project aligns with PepsiCo’s Positive Agriculture strategy in Vietnam by working to spread regenerative practices to restore the Earth across land equal to the company’s entire agricultural footprint, to sustainably source key crops and ingredients, and to improve the livelihoods of people in our agricultural supply chain. We believe that by aiming to create changes across the three dimensions: economic, social and environmental, She Feeds the World project will build capacity for farmers to improve their cultivation practices, increase yield, diversify livelihood options to generate more sustainable income, and save for the future. The project will promote more equitable access to knowledge, resources, and inclusive markets for vulnerable farmers on the social dimension. She Feeds the World in Vietnam, to be implemented in three provinces in Central Highland, namely Lam Dong, Gia Lai and Dak Lak, and expected to positively impact to near 160,000 people (60% women) in three years since 2022 will also tackle soil, water, and biodiversity issues to minimize impact on the natural ecosystem”.
Commenting on the initiative, Ms. Le Kim Dung, Country Director of CARE International in Vietnam, said: “SFtW Vietnam is built on CARE’s global SFtW framework and CARE Vietnam’s 30 years of programming. The project will contribute to advancing gender equality in the agriculture sector, particularly in the second phase of the National Targeted Program on New Rural Development (NTP-NRD). It demonstrates CARE and PepsiCo’s commitment to the public-private Partnership for Sustainable Agriculture in Vietnam (PSAV). In Tay Nguyen, SFtW Vietnam is strategically relevant to the government’s approved Plan on Restructuring the Agriculture Sector (2021-2025). The plan focuses on developing sustainable agriculture as well as enhancing the quality, value-add and competitiveness of local agricultural products.”
Gloria Steele, Chief Operating Officer of CARE USA adds, “It is significant that CARE’s global She Feeds the World partnership with PepsiCo is expanding in Vietnam and we appreciate MARD’s involvement with the program. Engaging government partners is key to sustainability and scale.”