Viet Nam News
HCM CITY – The Central Highlands province of Đắk Nông is aiming to build a brand for its avocado by applying good agricultural practices and traceability of origin, local officials told a news briefing in HCM City on Tuesday.
Tôn Thị Ngọc Hạnh, deputy chairwoman of the province People’s Committee, said Đắk Nông is among the largest avocado producers in the country with an area of around 2,600ha, or one-fifth of its total fruit growing area, under that fruit.
The average annual yield of avocado in the province is 10-15 tonnes per hectare. With prices remaining high in recent years, a hectare can fetch around VNĐ300-500 million (US$13,000-21,700) a year.
Avocado is helping eradicate hunger and poverty, with some farmers even growing rich, she added.
“We now aim to develop avocado as a tourism product by linking farming areas with local tourist attractions. The province has taken many steps towards achieving sustainable development of avocado.”
In March during a visit to New Zealand with a delegation headed by Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc, Đắk Nông officials signed an MOU with the New Zealand Government-to-Government Partnerships Office, the New Zealand Institute for Plant and Food Research and Vietnam’s SAM Agritech, the high-tech agriculture arm of SAM holdings, to support the development of the avocado industry in the province.
Under a three-year partnership, they will build a research institute to study avocado varieties that are suitable for the local soil and will fetch high prices, including Hass avocado, which is the most popular and accounts for 80 per cent of the avocados consumed globally.
Lê Trọng Yên, director of the provincial agricultural department, said farmers would be encouraged to apply Vietnamese and global GAP on all 724ha of specialised avocado farming areas by 2020 to improve the quality of the fruit and export to Europe.
The department would also organise programmes on labelling for farmers to enable consumers to trace the origin of Đắk Nông avocado, he added.
Lê Văn Một, head of the province’s investment promotion centre, said since avocados grown in the various Central Highlands are quite similar in terms of taste and looks, the use of VietGAP, GlobalGAP and traceability would help consumers distinguish Đắk Nông avocados from others.
The province will host its first avocado festival from July 18 to 23 to promote the fruit, bring together companies and farmers and showcase avocado-based products and other notable local farm produce. — VNS