|Bến Tre Province aims to boost the competitiveness of Xiêm coconuts in foreign markets. — Photo thuonggiathitruong.vn|Viet Nam News
BẾN TRE — The southern province of Bến Tre plans to develop its renowned Xiêm coconut exports by increasing its market value and researching farming technologies and techniques.
Bùi Dương Thuật, director of Mekong Impex Fresh Fruit Company Ltd, said that despite Bến Tre Xiêm coconut receiving a geographical indication (signs to indicate that a product originates from a specific region and possesses its associated qualities) on March 17, it did not help improve the product’s competitiveness in markets abroad.
He said that Bến Tre’s coconuts still could not compete with Thailand’s coconuts, due to their higher quality and cheaper production costs. As of March 22, Thailand coconuts were sold at US$0.89 per coconut at supermarkets in California, while Bến Tre coconuts, which are considered to be of lesser quality, were sold at $0.6.
Bến Tre plans to increase its coconut’s brand power by creating a network between coconut farmers and businesses, reducing the cost of productions, providing funding for studying technology and techniques in coconut farming, as well as increasing land for coconut farming by 20 per cent.
Farmers are also urged to work with co-operative groups and abide to VietGap standards in their farming to ensure higher quality coconuts.
Bến Tre is famous for its coconuts, having around 70,000 hectares of land for coconut farming. Around 600 million coconuts are grown every year, yielding VNĐ5.4 trillion annually.
Its coconuts are sold in several foreign markets, such as Canada, US and Australia. — VNS