VietHarvest and Action On Poverty Collaborate to Fight Food Waste and Hunger in Vietnam

This collaboration will implement the renowned Australian OzHarvest Food Rescue Model to reduce food waste and nourish the underserved people of Vietnam.

The signing ceremony of two organizations AOP and VietHarvest took place on June 20 in Hanoi. Photo: Action on Poverty

On June 20, Action on Poverty (AOP) leaders including John Kell - Chair of the Boards, Brayden Howie - CEO, and Ta Van Tuan - Director of the Asia Region joined the Cofounders VietHarvest and honored guests to announce AOP's latest collaboration to tackle food waste and hunger in Vietnam. This partnership will facilitate a 12-month VietHarvest pilot program from July 2022.

"The partnership union and signing ceremony of two organizations who are on a mission to create long-lasting positive impact together in the areas of food security and food sustainability in Vietnam," said Ta Van Tuan.

Established in 1968, AOP is an Australian NGO supporting community development through the implementation of programs and projects in many sectors such as public health, integrated rural development, livelihood improvement, micro-finance support, clean water and sanitation, community-based tourism, and climate change and environment protection.

Leaders from AOP, VietHarvest and OzHarvest at the signing ceremony. Photo: Action on Poverty

VietHarvest is led by Louise Tran and Jimmy Pham. Tran has over a decade of experience working in the Australian food rescue sector with OzHarvest while Pham is the founder of Vietnam’s first non-profit social enterprise, KOTO.

The signing event will be followed by the launch of a 12-month pilot program by VietHarvest, which is a replication of Ronni Kahn's OzHarvest Food Rescue model. Originated from Australia, this model has been replicated globally in the United Kingdom (UKHarvest), New Zealand (KiwiHarvest), Japan (JapanHarvest) and South Africa (SAHarvest).

Mr. Ta Van Tuan, Asia Regional Director of AOP, affirmed the shared mission and values of the two sides to develop a program that has a long-term impact on the society. Photo: Action on Poverty

The strategic partnership between AOP and VietHarvest is proposed to rescue thousands of kilos of surplus food, deliver thousands of meals to individuals in need, and divert methane from the atmosphere in Vietnam over the next 12 months.

Photo: VietHarvest

The Vietnamese Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development reported that 30-40% of food loss and waste occurs from fruit and vegetables. About 87% of households across Vietnam waste food every week, while over 570,000 people in Vietnam experience food shortages.

Most food is lost or spoiled through poor handling, storage, and distribution. It is estimated that 80% of rice in Vietnam never makes it to market for these reasons.

The total annual losses are about 8.8 million tonnes of food or US $3.9 billion, equivalent to 2% of the country’s gross domestic consumption (GDP) or 12% of Vietnamese GDP in the agricultural sector.

The Vietnamese Mekong Delta is one of the most agriculturally productive regions in the world with great importance for its global exports in rice, shrimp, and fruit but is under threat due to climate change.