Tan Tien’s animal husbandry group’s slaughtering activity
In 2012, disease and the uncertainty of the market led to loss of income for those who raised pigs. Many people could not sell their pigs or had to sell them at a very low price to wholesalers while the price of pork in the market remained strong. At that time, members of Tan Tien animal husbandry group, the most successful animal husbandry group among those supported by the project, had discussed finding a solution for problem that not only their group but also others were facing. After a lot of discussion, they decided to slaughter pigs to sell in the market. However, the slaughtering requires cages to store pigs, slaughter places and many types of equipment, which need an investment. The group had set up their plan in detail and sent it to CECAD. Recognizing that the plan was reasonable at that time, CECAD decided to support and fund them their proposed project to turn their ideas into reality. The group determined that they would lend money to one of the member, Mr. Minh. He would use that money to build cages, a small-sized slaughter place and buy necessary equipments. As regard to the commitment, Mr. Minh will prioritize slaughtering and selling the group’s members’ pigs. 2% of the profits will be deducted and contributed to the group’s budget to improve the group’s pigs’ breeds.
Tan Tien animal husbandry group has 22 members, with 8 households raising market hogs; the remaining households raise sows. On average, a household raising market hogs will raise 6 pigs at the same time. The member who has the most pigs normally raises 20 of them in a cage at the same time.
- Tan Tien animal husbandry group receives 8,900,000VND support money from CECAD to start up slaughter activity.
- This amount of money is invested in building a slaughter place and buying slaughter equipments for Mr. Minh’s household from July 2013. He borrowed another amount of 10,000,000VND for initial capital.
After 2 months of implementation, Minh has bought three pigs weighing a total 170 kg, from two members in the group. He has kept his commitment to buy pigs from the group at a higher cost than market price. However, according to Minh, he cannot keep buying pigs from the group, as he cannot sell all of them. This is due in part to the fact that slaughtering has just recently started. Another reason is that the group itself does not have a lot of market hogs to sell to him. The pigs are raised by households who have small herds, which then limits the number that can be sold. He also said that, although most of the members knew about the commitment between him and the group, they didn’t sell him pigs. He is afraid that they are only selling him low quality pigs while selling high quality pigs to a big buyer. However, according to group’s members, the reason that Minh could not buy their pigs are as followed. Minh cannot buy more than three pigs at a time from the group, as he can’t sell all of them. If he were to buy more than three pigs, he would have to keep them in cages until he is able to sell them off. This is problematic, as households typically do not have enough space to keep the pigs. It is because of this that the members with large herds normally sell off the whole herd at once rather than individual livestock to small buyers like Minh. Minh always goes to collect the pigs himself, thus needing the sellers aid in catching and weighing the pigs. This is challenging for households that do not have labour available. Minh can only sell one pig a day, weighed at 60 kg; he normally chooses to buy pigs weighed between 55-80 kg while a big buyer will purchase the whole herd regardless of weight. This makes selling to big buyer more desirable for group members. The group’s management board appreciates Minh’s family’s commitment. According to group’s members, this activity might help encourage market hogs husbandry within the group.
As mentioned in the commitment, the group’s management board encouraged members to support Minh by buying pork from him; however, only 4 of them have been doing so. Minh said he could understand why members continue to purchase their food elsewhere; traditions and habits are hard to break. In the group’s upcoming meeting, the management board will encourage members to collaborate and support Minh’s slaughter activity.
Minh also hopes that CECAD can help find him customers for high quality pork, with the option of sending the product to other communities.