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History of rice production in the Mekong Delta

Le Coq J.F., Trébuil G., Dufumier M.. 2004. In : Boomgaard Peter (ed.), Henley David (ed.). Smallholders and stockbreeders. Histories of foodcrop and livestock farming in Southeast Asia. Leiden : KITLV, p. 163-185. (Series VKI, 218).

This article focuses on the Mekong Delta, the main rice bowl of the country, which produced 51% of the domestic production in 1995. This area displays the highest per capita paddy production, at around 0.8 ton per year, and provides some 80% of the total amount of rice exported by Vietnam in 1995 (Lebailly et al. 2000). By achieving the highest growth rate in paddy production from 1985 to 1995, the Mekong Delta contributed significantly to the recent impressive results in rice production and export at the national level. After a description of the method and the materials used for this study, this article presents a time frame of the major socio-economic events and the evolution of the rice production in the Mekong Delta over the last century. It analyses then in detail, period per period following a chronological order, the effects of the evolution of the socio-economic environment on the agro-ecosystem transformations and rice production. It finally discusses the reasons of the tremendous effects of liberalization observed in Vietnam.

Mots-clés : riz; sécurité alimentaire; libéralisation des échanges; accroissement de production; moyen de production agricole; politique agricole; exportation; viet nam; mékong; système de production agricole

Chapitre d'ouvrage

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