Bringing Piggies to Market
At Trufflepig, we like to partake in all things fine and swine. When we come by fine swine, it’s sublime. Or perhaps a lovely wine, how divine. Okay, I’m done, I promise.
On a recent trip to Vietnam, I was introduced to a program that is doing some great work west of Hanoi. Bloom Microventures has created a wonderful sustainable tourism operation that aims to help local families by providing micro loans. For every day trip booked with the company, a 100 USD micro loan is provided to a family in need. This money can be used to purchase chickens, farming equipment, or in this case, feed to fatten up piglets for market.
We had the privilege of meeting Ms. Van, a 29-year-old mother of two. Her family has a breeding sow, and needed the loan to fatten up a litter of piglets for market, since they fetch a much higher price per pound when fully grown. Pork is the staple protein in Vietnam, and raising your own is a great way to make extra money to pay for school fees, uniforms, and other daily necessities. A pig is generally butchered early in the morning and completely sold (tip to tail) before you generally even wake up. It’s a hot commodity.
Candidates for these micro loans are vetted by the leader of the local Women’s Union, who then pass on their recommendations to Bloom. The results so far have been spectacular, and we are pleased to be working with them.
In addition to meeting the family your loan is benefitting, your day trip also gives you the opportunity to explore their village, try your hand at farming, and check out some of the local industries, like a broom factory. There are plenty of activities to fill the day, and it is an excellent opportunity for kids, as you can also stop by the local school to say hello. Next time you’re headed to Vietnam, give us a call; we’d be happy to help you help out.
Mike is our Asia planner in the know, visiting the region regularly to dig up great local finds like this one.