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Fruitful change: rural-urban transformation in Vietnam’s Mekong Delta

Rapid urbanisation and industrialisation have had multiple impacts on rural Vietnam since economic reforms were introduced in the mid-1980s. In a 2006 study, the authors discovered that three rural settlements focused on specialty fruits were thriving amid all the socioeconomic changes. In a follow-up study nearly a decade later, the authors discovered the settlements were still benefiting from rural-urban transformation. But new challenges have emerged, including weak quality standards, water pollution and waste, climate change, and population and
urbanisation pressures.

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Urbanisation drives profound transformations in rural areas and in food systems, presenting both challenges and opportunities for poverty reduction, rural development and food security. Policies at the local, national, regional and global scales are of critical importance in shaping rural-urban linkages and the political economy of food systems.

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Urbanisation, rural-urban transformations and food systems

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