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How a Vietnamese Picnic Ties to Agriculture

This weekend I went to a Vietnamese picnic- all in the name of agriculture, of course!

Agriculture in Viet Nam

My Ag Leaders of Tomorrow (ALOT) class focuses mainly on the agriculture of Missouri, but in the global world we live in it’s really not that simple!  Every class takes a trip to DC, as well as one overseas trip at the end of the program.  My husband when to China; next year I’ll be visiting VietNam!

To prep for the trip the Vietnamese Student Association at MU put together a presentation and picnic for us!  We heard from professors, PhD candidates, and a post-doc student about the agriculture in VietNam, as well as subjects closely related, like geography and finance.  (But truly, between the accent and the topic, I have no idea what the nice professor of international finance was talking about…)

Agriculture in Viet Nam

VietNam has gone from a third world country to a developing nation in a rather short amount of time.  They still have many challenges, which is why many of the students we met were post-grad.  The country is looking for highly educated people to help move the nation forward– and ag tech is going to be huge for them.

Agriculture in Viet Nam

This was my favorite slide of the day.  These are pictures of their “new” technology.  Top left is a “harvester,” not even a combine.  In the pic on the top right the pole in-between the two workers is actually a tree limb.  Still, even with their ag looking like this, they are anxious for the advantages of genetically modified crops.

Agriculture in VietNam

And since food, of course, is what we’re working for in agriculture, it was an important part of our education to eat some!

Agriculture in Viet Nam

I’ll admit to being worried, but actually I loved it!  It’s not spicy like Tai food, and not as… similar as all Chinese dishes seem to me.  There were many flavors, lots of them fresh veggies with herbs like mint.  I din’t quite understand how the dishes were supposed to go together- the noodles went in a sauce which made it like soup which was for dipping the little rolls in the bottom right corner, as well as adding to the veggies in the top pic? But I loved all of it, and even braved the dessert (very center pic) which was like tapioca with coconut milk along with boiled peanuts, corn, and mushrooms.  Confession, one of my mushrooms was julienned so long and thin it looked like a worm.  I did not eat it.

Our trip is scheduled for July of 2016, so I’ve got a year to add to my Pinterest board of Vietnamese culture.  And if you want to follow me on Instagram and Twitter (both @daddystractor) I promise I’ll post lots while we’re there!

I can’t wait!

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