Photographer's Note


Salt Farms in Khanh-Hoa

I took this photo at Hn Khi salt-farms on National Highway 1 half-way between Nha Trang and Vạn Giả Pass, which is some 30 km North of Nha Trang City where local harvesting salt is the largest salt industry of Khnh Ha Province. Normally, a liter of salt water collected from this area after evaporation could end up with 35 grams of salt.

Since several centuries ago, salt has been an important and primary role in national revenue. According to Viet Nam History by Trần Trọng Kim, in 1721, King Trịnh Cương created a new department named Gim Dương to collect 20% tax on salt. Buyers must have registered card issued by Gim Dương to be legal for salt purchase. They also have to buy from government officials first prior to dealing with regular producers. Such a tax system triggered high price of salt and effected normal people. In 1732, the king aborted salt system to save his throne from rebels. 14 years later, Trịnh Doanh re-established a method of salt taxing: organizing every 50 acres of salt field into a kitchen (unit); each kitchen must turn in 40 drawers of salt, an equivalence of 180 dongs.

Nowadays, salt still takes its role in Vietnam economy to an extend that we are using satellite photos to help improving salt harvesting. Vietnam has a project of nearly VND134 billion (US$8.4 million) to be invested in industrial salt production to meet domestic demand. The salt industry will invest mainly in developing industrial salt fields in the central provinces of Khnh Ha, Ninh Thuận and Bnh Thuận. Vietnam expects to have about 6,600 hectares of industrial salt fields in its central and southeastern coastal provinces by end of 2005 to ensure a balance in the supply of industrial and cooking salt.

Vietnam produces 300,000 tons of industrial salt annually. Of this amount, less than 200,000 tons are qualified for use in industrial production. As a result, the country still has to import about 150,000 tons of salt for industrial production each year. These imports have brought salt prices down in the domestic market.

For salt production process, please use this link.

Remarks: I am currently out of town hunting pictures for 2006 Calendar. Sorry that I am without time to write the note. This note is contributed by a trekearth friend who is interested in this topic.


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Additional Photos by Nhiem Hoang (hoangthenhiem) Silver Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 13 W: 0 N: 488] (2531)
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