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Delta flower, fruit farmers get ready for seasonal holiday sales boom

Update: December, 08/2012 - 09:28

CUU LONG DELTA (VNS) — Farmers in Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta provinces are busily working to produce flowers and special-shaped fruit traditionally sought after by people for Tet (Lunar New Year) holiday decorations.

The Phu Tri Agriculture Extensive Club, owned by farmer Vo Trung Thanh in Hau Giang Province's Phu Tan village, has already received orders from HCM City and other provinces for 5,500 wine gourd-shaped pomelos.

His plan was to produce at least 10,000 pomelos for the Tet markets.

One pomelo will cost VND300,000 (US$14,28)-VND700,000, depending on the size.

Thanh said he had recently stopped taking orders because the flowers of nearly 2,000 pomelo trees had bloomed early, meaning the harvest would come sooner than expected.

"I hope I'll be able to harvest more than 8,000 pomelos, " he said.

Thanh said farmers of his club would also grow at least 3,500 wine-gourd watermelons.

The wine-gourd shaped watermelons grown by Delta farmers for the first time sold well last year.

One watermelon of this special shape will cost VND600,000-VND1,500,000, which would be the same as last year's prices, according to Thanh.

Pomelos and watermelons are typically displayed on the traditional altars of Vietnamese people during Tet holidays.

Gardeners in Ben Tre Province's Cho Lach District are expected to supply about 5 million pots of flowers, mainly roses and marigolds, for Tet markets in Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta provinces and HCM City.

For the Year of the Snake, hundreds of pots with 1.5-metre-high ornamental trees with stems twisted in the shape of a snake are being made by the Nam Cong Shop in Cho Lach District for orders from HCM City.

Farmers in Dong Thap Province's Lai Vung District will supply about 40,000 tonnes of tangerines, a speciality of the district, to provinces around the country, according to Ta Van Hoi, Party secretary of Lai Vung District.

Authorities in Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta provinces said there would be an abundant supply of goods at shops and markets, satisfying the diverse demand of consumers in the region. The People's Committee of Tra Vinh Province said it would provide interest-free loans of VND31 billion (US$1.4million) to businesses that have joined a programme to stabilise prices of Tet items.

Both businesses and the Industry and Trade Department of Hau Giang Province have spent more than VND380 billion, 5.5 per cent more than last year to stock commodities like dried shrimp, meat, processed food, rice and sugar for Tet.

Can Tho City's businesses have prepared many essential items for Tet, including beverages, clothes, food, candies and sugar-preserved fruits worth a total of VND2,400billion, up 10 per cent from last year. — VNS

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