Princess Máxima meets with students from Vo Thi Sau Den Dom Dom School in Binh Phuoc Provine
Since 1995, Friesland Campina Vietnam (formerly known as Dutch Lady Vietnam, the world's leading diary company with many famous brands including Dutch Lady, Friso, Yomost and Fristi) has strived to help Vietnam grow particularly through the Den Dom Dom (DDD) program and the Dairy Development Program (DDP).
Spreading the fondness of learning
Since it was initiated more than eight years ago, the Den Dom Dom Program has sought to spread the message that "sharing is happiness". Eight years' time is not so long, but it proved long enough for the program to nurture and improve unprivileged students' fondness for learning.
The program managed to make impressive strides in encouraging students, struggling to overcome adversity, to study. Looking back at the achievements, those who took part in the program must be proud of their small contributions, and feel happy that they managed to make a difference.
Six Den Dom Dom schools have been built since 2002 in disadvantaged provinces across the country including Binh Phuoc, Ha Nam, Ca Mau, Hue, Quang Ngai and Kon Tum. The other two schools are scheduled to be constructed in Quang Binh and Lai Chau provinces in mid - July this year. Meanwhile, more than 20,000 scholarships have been granted to unprivileged students, nationwide. These investments have helped realize the Vietnamese tradition of helping the needy as much as possible while also advancing the role of the Den Dom Dom program's role in community development.
Supporting Vietnam's Dairy farmers
Dairy cow farming began in Vietnam in the 1990s and faced many difficulties. Large diary companies remained wary of investing in the industry, which was largely confined to small-scale, family-run farms. Everything changed when FrieslandCampina Vietnam launched the Dairy Development Program to help develop the nascent industry at a steady pace. At the same time, the firm extended support to local dairy farmers by introducing them to professional methods and technology of farming dairy cow. Since 1995, FrieslandCampina Vietnam has launched the Dairy Development Program with the investment of US$ 1 million annually. The investment was then considered as generous for an agricultural project.
| Princess Máxima of the Netherlands visits a model farm at FrieslandCampina Vietnam's factory in Binh Duong
The first step in the program was to re-structure the milk purchase system. FrieslandCampina Vietnam signed direct contracts with cow farmers"”who were now paid for their milk based on its quality.
Next, to shorten the distance of delivering milk to ensure maximum quality, FrieslandCampina Vietnam established 41 purchase locations, and 4 milk chilling centers. Farmers were invited to attend training sessions which helped familiarize them with modern, industrial operations.
Dang Huu Ly, a farmer in Cu Chi District's Tan Thong Hoi Commune, said the microorganism rate in milk has decreased considerably since he joined FrieslandCampina Vietnam's purchase system. Now machines do the milking and his product is stored in sanitary aluminum containers.
The Prince of Orange and Princess Máxima of the Netherlands will pay an official visit to Vietnam that will last from Monday (March 28) to Thursday (March 31). They will be accompanied by the Dutch Minister of Agriculture and Foreign Trade Henk Bleker, plus a business delegation representing over 80 Dutch companies. The economic mission will examine five sectors: water, agriculture, transport and logistics, the maritime sector and oil and gas.
The delegation will visit both Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. During their visits, both delegations will participate in seminars and meetings with Vietnamese officials and businesses that contribute to the wonderful community to which FrieslandCampina Vietnam is now a proud member.
"Thanks to this simple change, my income increased at least 15-20 percent per month, and that's just the bonus I receive for good quality milk," Ly said, happily.
According to Mr. Luu Van Tan, head of FrieslandCampina Vietnam's Dairy Development Program, this is one of effective results of investment. About 2,600 households have benefited from this program"” a level of success that few agricultural development models have enjoyed.
With practical contributions to Vietnam's education and dairy industries, FrieslandCampina Vietnam received an honorary visit from the Netherlands' princess Máxima on March 30, 2011. This is an award and also an encouragement for FrieslandCampina Vietnam to continue contributing to sustainable growth of Vietnam.