|Customers buy Tết items at a regional speciality store in HCM City's District 1. — Photo nld.com.vn|
HCM CITY — Many regional speciality products are pouring into HCM City ahead of Tết (the Lunar New Year), which falls on January 22.
More than 10,000 agricultural products and other items from across the country are being sold at the ‘Tết Xanh quà Việt – Xuân Quý Mão 2023’ festival.
They include safe vegetables and fruits that meet food hygiene and safety standards, cashew nut, candied fruits, pork and beef pastes, spring rolls, rice, vermicelli, dried bamboo shoot, miến dong (vermicelli made of arrowroot starch), spices from the northern mountainous region such as mắc khén (wild pepper grown by the ethnic Thái), hạt dỗi, mắc mật, and traditional fish sauce.
It has nearly 100 booths set up by start-ups, craft village co-operatives and businesses from various provinces and cities.
The products meet Vietnamese and international quality standards such as OCOP, VietGap, organic, HACCP, and ISO and have High-quality Vietnamese Goods certification, High-quality Vietnamese Goods - Integration Standard certification and geographical indication, or are typical agricultural products of various localities.
Many have a firm foothold in the international market.
Visitors can find ‘new, green - clean - safe’ products, especially for gifting during the upcoming Lunar New Year, those made by start-ups and OCOPs such as vegetarian products by Biển Phương Trading Service and Bình Loan Company, dried shrimp and crab-based products from Con Tôm Co., Ltd, grapes and apples from Chang Farm, brown rice, and wind-hanging persimmon products.
Vũ Kim Anh, deputy director of the Business Studies and Assistance Centre and deputy head of the festival organising committee, said: “We also organise many programmes for visitors such as culinary and Tết dishes experience and making essential oils and healthy products from natural herbs.
Trần Trung Hiếu, a resident of District 5 and a visitor at the event, said: “I bought more than VNĐ2 million (US$85) worth of sticky rice, dried bamboo shoot, lạp xưởng (Vietnamese sausage), dried forest shiitake mushrooms, and candied fruits for Tết.”
A cosmopolitan hub where people from all over the country come to live and work, HCM City has huge demand for regional specialities, especially on occasions like Lunar New Year.
Shops selling northern speciality foods on Điên Biên Phủ Street and Chu Mạnh Trinh Street in District 1 and Trần Quốc Toản Street in District 3 are also crowded these days.
Their popular products include kohlrabi, cabbage, garland chrysanthemum, green onion, carrot and other vegetables, alcohol made from sticky rice, and Vân village wine.
Processed foods include giò thủ (pig's head paste), thịt đông (braised frozen pork), bamboo shoot pickles, bánh chưng (square-shaped glutinous rice cake filled with green bean paste and pork), chè kho (soft green lentil cake), and Vũ Đại traditional braised fish.
The products are more expensive than during normal days and their prices could increase further before Tết, according to shop owners.
Besides northern specialities, people in the city can also find specialities from southern and central regions such as Cà Mau dried shrimp both with and without the shell, Sóc Trăng pía cake, Hòa Lộc mango, Năm Roi pomelo, Lai Vung mandarin, Trà Vinh Tét cake, dried snakehead fish, Nghệ An beef paste, and others.
Supermarkets, traditional markets, social networks, and shopping portals also sell all kinds of regional specialities. — VNS