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VN seeks ways to increase export of organic farm produce

The organic food market was expected to reach $437.36 billion by 2026 with a compounded annual growth rate of 14 per cent.
Organic farming is a trend as consumers are looking for better food to ensure health. — VNA/VNS Photo Vu Sinh

Vietnam was seeking ways to expand the export of organic farm produce as global demand was anticipated to increase rapidly with consumers paying more attention to health.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, the global organic farm produce market expanded rapidly in the past two decades, from just US$18 billion in 2020 to $188 billion in 2021. The market is forecast to reach $208 billion this year.

The US and the EU are the largest markets for organic products, all together holding a market share of 90 per cent. However, markets that saw rapid growth in the consumption demand for organic farm produce come from other regions, such as Canada (26.1 per cent), China (23 per cent) and Germany (22.3 per cent).

Those are potential markets for made-in-Vietnam organic products, according to the Trade Promotion Centre for Agriculture.

Currently, Vietnam’s organic products are present in 180 countries with annual revenue of $335 million, still a very modest share.

Nguyen Minh Tien, Director of the Trade Promotion Centre for Agriculture, said consumers around the world were looking for better food for their families to ensure health with increasing demand for products with traceability and food hygiene and safety.

Countries were also increasing the standards for sustainability, product labelling process and quarantine regulations to aim at protecting public health and the environment.

The organic food market was expected to reach $437.36 billion by 2026 with a compounded annual growth rate of 14 per cent.

With the organic agriculture development project for the 2020-30 period, organic farming emerged to be a trend in Vietnam.

Statistics showed that the total agricultural land for organic farming reached 174,000 hectares, an increase of 47 per cent over 2016, putting Vietnam in the top ten countries with the largest organic agricultural land in Asia.

Vietnam set the target of increasing the total organic land area to 2.5-3 per cent of the agricultural land area by 2030.

According to the ministry’s Department of Agro Processing and Market Development, organic agriculture become an unavoidable trend not only to ensure health but also to protect the environment in the context that climate change is seriously affecting agricultural production.

Bui Hong Quan, deputy chairman of agriculture processing company Vinamit, said that the most important thing for enterprises in organic agriculture was to fulfil their commitments to quality and maintain their reputation, adding that enterprises would face a lot of difficulties during this process, such as a lack of resources.

Tu Thi Tuyet Nhung, head of the Participatory Assurance System Vietnam’s Coordination Committee, said that organic products had not been priced at their true value and faced difficulty in competing with other products. Many organic agriculture producers were forced to give up because of losses, she said.

Nguyen Hong Lam, chairman of Que Lam Group pointed out that the bottlenecks in the development of organic agriculture were the lack of trust among enterprises, farmers and consumers and the exploitation of resources to the point of exhaustion.

Lam said that the focus should be placed on developing policies to encourage enterprises to establish organic value chains together with enhancing quality control measures.

“Organic agriculture production is a long-term process. We must persevere, there is no other way,” he stressed.

Nguyen Quoc Toan, Director of the Department of Agricultural Product Processing and Market Development, said organic production played an important role in the green growth of the agricultural sector.

He pointed out a number of difficulties enterprises were encountering during the process of moving towards organic production such as building trust of consumers in organic products, limited conditions for large-scale production, and the lack of synergy to further promote organic production on a larger scale.

The key would be traceability, transparency and digitalisation of organic products, Toan said.

Currently, there are about 17,000 organic agriculture producers, 555 processors and 60 exporters in Vietnam. 

Source: Vietnam News

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