NTFPs and CWRs in Vietnam and the Mekong Delta presented by Ecosystems Specialist under the Climate Change Impact and Adaptation Study of Mekong ARCC Project during May 7 -11, 2012, in Vientiane, Lao PDR.
NTFPs and CWRs inVietnam and the Mekong Delta First ARCC Task 2 team meeting Vientiane May 6-11, 2012
References• An Overview of the NTFP Sub-Sector in Vietnam. Edited by Jason Morris and An Van Bay. Forest Science Institute of Vietnam Non-timber Forest Products Research Center. Project: Sustainable Utilization of Non-Timber Forest Products Project Secretariat (2000).• Non-Timber Forest Products sub-sector analysis-Vietnam. Mission report prepared for IUCN Vietnam by Jenne de Beer, Ha Chu Chu, Tran Quoc Tuy, and NTFP RC (2000)• Vietnam second country report on the state of the nation’s plant genetic resources for food and agriculture. Pham Thi Sen, Luu Ngoc Trinh, Plant Resources Center.• Importance of floating rice in the Mekong Delta. Nguyen Van Kien et al. An Giang University.
Background• About 12,000 plant species estimated to occur in Vietnam• 7,000 species described; 1,000 plant species endemic to the country. – 76 species giving aromatic resin – 600 species giving tannin – 93 species giving dyeing stuff – 160 species giving essential only – 260 species giving fat oils – 1,498 species giving pharmaceutical products.• The importance of NTFPs to rural households in Vietnam cannot be overestimated.• This applies in particular to the 8.5 million people of ethnic minorities, who mainly live in upland areas.• Despite sweeping socio-economic changes, NTFPs continue to play an important role in the livelihood of ethnic minorities and rural households.
Value of Vietnam’s NTFP exports in 1996Source: Ha Chu Chu, 1996NTFP Total export value Share (USD million)Bamboo 37.6 2.5Rattan 119.0 7.9Cinnamon 95.6 6.3Essential oils 312.5 20.7Turpentine and Rosin 49.6 3.3Mushroom 206.5 13.7Pharmaceuticals 689.9 45.6Total 1,510.7 100.0
Status and trends• The development of NTFPs is faced with many difficulties due to heavy deforestation.• In recent years, a small increase of forest coverage and forest area has been seen, but forest quality has been reduced. – primary forests have been replaced by secondary forests; – broadleaf forests have been replaced by bamboo and rattan forest; – rich forests have become poor forests; – multiple-level forests with high biodiversity and rich in NTFPs have become forests with single tree species and few NTFPs.• In addition, market instability, price fluctuations, and the lack of investment incentives by government have also created obstacles.
• Interest in NTFPs is slowly growing during last decade (before 2000)• This is to a certain extent reflected in MARD policy documents, but inconsistently.• However, the increased interest so far hardly affects the overall research agenda in the country.• The importance of NTFPs and the need to better understand and improve local resource management are mentioned in Conservation & Development project documents, but often with minimal allocation of expert time to address the issues.
Background• In Vietnam 1,300 species in 77 families described as CWR; some have been used in crop breeding.• Not much effort in studying diversity of PGRFA.• No study on erosion of PGRFA.• No monitoring and warning systems for loss of PGRFA.• Past 10 years, a significant number of plant species in 56 families were identified as new discoveries to VN and the world
Main reasons for erosion of PGRFA:• New varieties being introduced for commercial production.• Deforestation and intensive land use.• Natural disasters, and biotic and abiotic stresses;• negligence and insufficient management
In situ conservation of CWRs and PAVs in PAs.• In the national biodiversity action plan approved in 1995 (1996 - 2005), CWR and PAVs given high priority for inventory, protection, conservation, and sustainable use.• Some efforts made with certain success.• Protection in CWR and PAVs in PAs strengthened.• The total number of natural protected areas increased
Issues of In situ conservation in PAs• Insufficient inventory and assessment of PGR diversity in the country• Indigenous knowledge has also not been well studied.• Various CWRs or PAVs not included in the list for protection and sustainable use.• Small number of PAs, not sufficient to represent the diverse topographical and ecological conditions of the country.• Existing PAs management issues.• Poor documentation and database;• Limited information sharing between institutions involved.
In situ conservation: Outside PAs• Some research projects carried out to set in situ conservation of CWRs and PAVs outside PAs.• A $4 million project of UNDP funded by GEF to protect 6 important crops including rice, taro, litchi-longan, rice bean, citrus, and tea in 8 “gene management zones” in northern mountains, northern midlands, and north-west mountains.• Successes, nevertheless, were very limited and restricted to only few locations.• Not much efforts spent in the Red River Delta, Mekong Delta, and North East area where agriculture intensification and infrastructure development are taking place rapidly.
Ex situ conservation• A national PGR network established; member institutions mandated to collect and conserve crop genetic resources.• The Plan Resources Center coordinating the network and maintaining the National Gene Bank with 20 members.• About 40,000 germplasm accessions of 300 crop species conserved ex situ, in vitro or seeds collected.
• The most important shortcomings in sustaining the existing ex situ collections are: - Improper management in terms of both documentation and material storage. - Inadequate classification of existing collections into short-, medium- or long- term ones.
NTFPs and CWRs in the Mekong Delta “Bird in the sky Fish in the water Whoever able Is free to catch” Was an old saying in the Delta.
NTFPs• 30 years ago, natural resources were abundant in the Mekong Delta.• Harvest of natural resources contributed significantly to livelihoods of delta inhabitants.• Today, natural resources are becoming less and less abundant
Drivers• Loss of habitats and overexploitation, due to: – Population growth and increasing pressures – Intensification of human activities – Simplification of ecosystems: highly diverse ecosystems are being replaced by uniformly structured monocultures (e.g irrigated rice, mangrove, forestry, intensive shrimp aquaculture)
Key NTPFs in the Delta:• Freshwater wetlands: bee honey, melaleuca oil, wild edible plants.• Mangrove forest: fish, shrimp, crab, fuel wood, bee honey, edible plants.Key CWRs in the Delta:- Wild rice- Floating rice- Others?
Floating rice (Oryza Sativa L and Oryza prosative) Floating rice Source: Nguyen Van Kien et al, 2012Distribution of floating rice before 1975Source: Vo Tong Xuan and Matsui (1988)
• In 1970s, one of the main staple food for South East Asia.• Tolerant of inundation up to 4m for 3-5 months• Stem can be 5-6 m long.• Strong resistance to diseases; not dependent on agro- chemicals.• Can grow 6-7cm/day to keep up with flood water. Extent of floating rice in An Giang province.• 1.4-1.7 tons/ha in acidic area; Source: Nguyen Van Kien et al, 2012 3 tons/ha on good soils.• Provides good habitat for fish
Wild rice (Oryzarufipogon) • About 1000 ha in Tram Chim National Park and 150 ha in Lang Sen wetland reserve. • The poor used to harvest wild rice in the wild for food before. • Tolerant of deep inundation, drought, acidity. • Low yield; high quality rice. • Good habitat for fish and birds. • A farmer in An Giang province has created 19 new strains of high-yield rice by crossing-pollinating; 2 of new strains created from wild varieties.
The bring home messages• Not much information about NTFPs and CWRs in the Mekong Delta.• Delta systems are being simplified, resulting in rapid loss of NTFPs and CWRs and less capacity to adapt to changes.• There are examples of initiatives using CWRs to adapt to changes.