To make their produce competitive in the regional market, farmers in the Mekong Delta’s southeastern provinces have created brands for them and adopted new technologies.
A VietGAP-quality pomelo orchard in Binh Phuoc Province.
Tay Ninh Province has over 3,400ha of longan, pomelo, durian, and custard apple orchards now on lands where more low-value crops like rubber, manioc and sugarcane used to be grown.
Fruit farmers have adopted advanced technologies, helping make their custard apples better known in the market.
They have built brand names for other fruits like green skin grapefruit, mango and jackfruit.
Product traceability has also been introduced.
Tay Ninh authorities have plans to create brand names for two to three more of the province’s produce by 2020.
Binh Phuoc has 21 farming co-ops and more than 100 farming groups which grow fruit trees on more than 10,000ha.
Farmers are encouraged to link up to create large parcels of land which can produce large quantities of identical produce so that brands could be built for them.
The province Department of Science and Technology had been told to create brand names for the “chicken raised in gardens (gà thả vườn)” and Thanh Luong – Binh Long longan.
Two years later the farmers association of Thanh Luong Commune (in Binh Long township) was certified as the owner of these two items. This allows the 31 Thanh Luong – Binh Long longan growers and 32 poultry farmers in the commune to use these collective ownership certificates to sell their produce.
According to the province Department of Science and Technology, these collective ownership certificates indicate the brand names and value of the province’s farm produce.
They also encourage farmers to invest in technology.
Authorities in Tay Ninh and Binh Phuoc provinces have joined hands to create areas specialising in high-value crops to build brand names for major produce, enhance trade promotion and encourage farmers and firms to advertise their products at trade fairs and exhibitions to expand their markets.
In Tay Ninh Province, Lavifood JSC has contracted to buy the entire output of 224ha of orchards. It has also collaborated with Duong Minh Chau District authorities for a project to buy fruits and vegetables grown on a total area of 3,000ha.
According to Vo Duc Trong, the director of the province Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, Tây Ninh has focused on hi-tech farming, and wants produce grown using technology to account for 30 per cent of total agricultural production.
The switch from low-value crops to fruits has been a major success in terms of increasing farmers’ incomes.
The province has over 200ha under custard apple, 1,000ha under green-skin pomelo, 380ha under banana, and 90ha under orchids and 38 farms growing clean vegetables to VietGAP standards.
Binh Phuoc Province targets having 157 farming, fisheries and forestry co-operatives by 2020. — VNS
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