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Việt Nam pushes up fruit exports

Update: August, 07/2017 - 09:00
Coconut harvest in the southern province of Bến Tre. — VNA/VNS Photo Huỳnh Phúc Hậu
Viet Nam News

HÀ NỘI — Vina T&T Import – Export Service Trading Co Ltd last week exported its first batch of fresh coconuts to the US, which is considered to be a difficult market.

The coconut is a special fruit of the Cửu Long (Mekong) Delta province of Bến Tre, which is known to be the country’s premier coconut growing region.

General Director of Vina T&T Nguyễn Đình Tùng said that the fruit had been checked and radiated, as per the international standards in Việt Nam, before they were shipped to the US.

“The company’s partner will check it again in the US. After that, we will export five containers of fresh coconuts to this market, which is known to set high standards in terms of the quality of fresh fruit imports,” Tùng told Việt Nam News.

The company successfully negotiated with its partner to export coconut to the US, which mainly imported the fruit from Thailand, he said. “A disadvantage for the Vietnamese coconut is the price, which is about 20 per cent higher than that of Thailand, making it difficult to negotiate. We finally overcame it,” Tùng said.

Vina T&T occupies 40 per cent of the Việt Nam’s export market share in the US. The company has exported longan, dragon fruit, durian, rambutan and coconut to the US. It has received the licence to export star apple to the US and is awaiting the fruit harvest season.

“We buy fruits from the areas that grow them in bulk. We then radiate and package them before exporting. Each variety of fruit has a unique manner of radiation and package. We have to strictly follow the standards given by our US partners,” he said.

"I have recently signed a contract to buy 60 tonnes of longan, a specialty of the northern province of Hưng Yên, for export to the US. I will transfer the packaging technology to the local growers, and then ship the fruit to HCM City for radiation,” he added.

Việt Nam last year earned US$2.4 billion from the export of fruits and vegetables, of which $6 million came from Vina T&T.

With the market showing positive signs last year, the company has set the target to earn $12 million, doubling last year’s figures. In the first seven months of this year, the company earned $8 million.

Export value up

According to the latest figure from the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Việt Nam made $360 million through the export of fruits and vegetables in July, taking it to $2.03 billion in the first seven months of this year, while marking an increase of 48.9 per cent, compared with the same period last year.

Meanwhile, the country spent $216 million to import fruits and vegetables in July, taking the total value since early this year to $852 million, doubling the figure in the same period last year. The country’s largest export markets were Thailand and China, with a market share of 57 per cent and 16.8 per cent, respectively.

To reach the target of $3 billion from the export of fruits and vegetable this year or a higher target next year, Tùng said it was necessary to have the businesses consulting and participating in the country’s trade promotion programmes.

“In addition to this, we should choose fruits that can be harvested throughout the year, such as pomelo, soursop, mandarin and orange, for export. The businesses need the Government’s support on storage technology,” Tùng added. — VNS

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