Nghệ An businesses promotes OCOP products for Tết markets

December 24, 2022 - 08:50

Many business households in central Nghệ An Province’s craft villages have been racing to increase production and promote sale channels for their traditional products, which was granted ‘one commune- one product (OCOP) certification, as demand for traditional specialties spike during the Lunar New Year Festival.


Consumers buy OCOP products at a trade fair in Hà Nội on December 21, 2022. VNA/VNS Vũ Sinh

HÀ NỘI — Many business households in central Nghệ An Province’s craft villages have been racing to increase production of their traditional products, which have been granted ‘one commune-one product' (OCOP) certification, as demand for traditional specialties spike during the Lunar New Year Festival.

Traditional products such as nhút, cà rice cake, black sesame rice cake, oranges, vằng tea, and tapioca starch have been granted OCOP product certification. OCOP products are commercial products and services, including food, beverages, handicrafts and rural tourism services, that are classified under a five-star system.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), 63 localities have conducted tests for OCOP products with 8,478 OCOP products rated three stars or higher.

Up to 4,351 OCOP manufacturers have three-star OCOP products, with 38.3 per cent being co-operatives, 26.1 per cent businesses and 33.3 per cent households.

Nghệ An has 253 OCOP products with three to five-star standards.

Speed up production

Black sesame rice cake has been a favorite delicacy of Đô Lương District and has been granted a three-star OCOP rating.

Workers in Lương Sơn Food Production and Trading Co. Ltd. in Nhân Sơn Commune are busy supplying the market for this Lunar New Year.

Nguyễn Bá Thắng, director of the company, said the company has nearly 15 types of rice cake and has just successfully produced brown rice cake.

In order to keep up with orders for partners, the company is speeding up machine capacity and hiring more production workers during weekends, he added.

Lương Sơn sesame rice cakes have been exported to Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, Japan. The company has worked with 2,000 large and small agents and 350 collaborators to sell about 40 million products per year, bringing revenue of over VNĐ14 billion ($591,210).

Villagers who make cà rice cake, a crispy sugar snack in Hưng Tân Commune, Hưng Nguyên District, have been working overtime to ensure adequate supply.

Nguyễn Thị Dung, a member of a cà rice cake business household in the commune, said she has invested more than VNĐ15 million ($633) to equip a dough mixer to increase capacity to ensure sufficient cake supply to dealers.

“Normally, we produce an average of 60 kilogrammes of cakes per day, but since October, we have increased to 80 kilogrammes and the amount will rise as orders gradually increase ahead of Tết,” she said.

“Employees are taking turns to work overtime. We are recruiting more workers to keep up with production,” she added.

Workers are producing Đô Lương black sesame rice cake at Lương Sơn Food Production and Trading Co,Ltd in Nhân Sơn Commune in Đô Lương District in central Nghệ An Province. VNA/VNS Photo Bích Huệ

rice cake is a traditional specialty of Hưng Tân Commune. It’s made from glutinous rice flour, egg, white sugar, ginger and pork lard. After the main ingredients are mixed, they are shaped into small balls, fried in a hot pan at low heat, and covered with a thin layer of sugar.

The business has supplied the market nearly four tonnes of cake since this August, earning hundreds of millions of đồng.

Currently, there are more than 100 cà rice cake households, accounting for nearly 70 per cent of the total households in the village, creating jobs and increasing incomes for villagers.

Nguyễn Văn Tâm, Chairman of the communal People's Committee, said apart from signature cà cakes, the craft village has launched many products with new flavours such as gấc (spiny gourd), lotus and kimchi chili powder to serve during Tết holidays.

“These are products that are being built with four-star OCOP products for 2023,” he added.

Boost sales channels

Among Nghệ An Province's OCOP products for the 2023 Lunar New Year market, lotus products by the Uncle Hồ’s Lotus Agricultural Service Cooperative are on their way to becoming a national brand.

Phạm Kim Tiến, director of the cooperative, said it is supplying over 100 different varieties of lotus to the markets. There are 15 products made from lotus, four of which have earned a four-star OCOP rating and five others a three-star rating.

Tiến said the cooperative plans to supply 5,000 Tết gift boxes to the market. In order to prepare the source of goods, the cooperative has stepped up purchasing and processing raw materials, recruiting more seasonal workers to participate in Tết fairs and promotion programmes in many provinces and cities.

Currently, the cooperative is expanding distribution channels through agents, enhancing online sales, participating on e-commerce platforms and exporting to foreign countries.

Accredited with a three-star OCOP rating in 2021, Hướng Hoá oranges of Lê Thị Hương, a business household in Đỉnh Sơn Commune in Anh Sơn District, are among the most popular products for Lunar New Year.

Hương said her two-hectare organic orange garden was ready for Tết. The fruits are mainly for displaying at altars and Tết gifts, so she has made new labels and packaging with a traceability stamp.

People in other districts are busy producing various kinds of products such as sausages, sour meat, salted bamboo shoots, cow meat, and smoked pork.

“This Tết comes earlier than usual, so my family has prepared twice as much of the ingredients as usual and made Tết gift baskets as ordered. The price ranges between VNĐ200,000 to VNĐ2 million ($84),” said Trương Thị Bảo, a member of a business household in Minh Tiến Village, Châu Hạnh Commune in Quỳ Châu District.

The provincial authority said that localities have supported business households to build OCOP products and develop packaging design, labelling and product design and marketing to expand the market, especially during this Tết holiday.

After being granted OCOP certification, all products are sent for trade promotion, and sales volume increases by 50-60 per cent, it said. — VNS