Elevating Ninh Thuan Grape Brand

2:52:58 PM | 24/2/2014

Grapes are a highly valued staple crop of Ninh Thuan province. Therefore, the province has stepped up scientific and technological application in the cultivation, harvesting and protection of the local speciality fruit crop, as well as registered for the protection of its brand name and geographical indications.
Promoting scientific and technical applications
The grape was introduced into Ninh Thuan province in 1960, test-planted by the South Central Centre for Agricultural Technical Research based in Nha Ho, Ninh Son district, and was commercially produced in the 1980s. At present, the province has nearly 1,000 hectares of grape fields with an average yield of 25 tonnes of fresh grapes per hectare per year.
Ninh Thuan has given priority to grape investment and development projects since 1992, including planting, preserving and processing techniques, while conducted studies on new grape varieties suitable with the local climate. As many as 17 Ninh Thuan grape development projects with a total funding of some VND15 billion were carried out. Some new grape varieties were introduced to viticulturists, including NH01-48, NH01-152 and BlackQueen. The Department of Science and Technology has also collaborated with experts, scientists and technicians from centrally and provincially governed institutes to train and guide techniques, and direct formulating models for transferring grape cultivating, processing, preserving techniques, based on VietGAP standards, to viticulturists. As a result, grape productivity has increased significantly from 10-15 tonnes per hectare a year to 25-30 tonnes.
In addition, to raise the quality and added value of grapes, Ninh Thuan province has accelerated scientific and technical application in the storing and processing stages. It has invested a lot to study storing technologies to extend the shelf life and enhance the quality of fresh grapes to meet market demand, processed grape wines to raise the value of grapes, and transfer fresh grape processing and preserving techniques to viticulturists and commercial units.
Resolve to protect brand name
Nguyen Khac Lam, Deputy Director of the Department of Science and Technology of Ninh Thuan province, said building geographical indications for Ninh Thuan grape products is essential to lift the market position of Ninh Thuan grapes and increase incomes for viticulturists. For that reason, the province has attached much importance to registering brand names and geographical indications for Ninh Thuan grapes.
The Department of Science and Technology embarked on the project "Registering and protecting geographical indications for Ninh Thuan grape products" in 2010 and the National Office of Intellectual Property of Vietnam (NOIP) issued Decision No. 194 dated February 17, 2012 to certify the geographical indication of Ninh Thuan grape products. The certification of the geographical indication has contributed to empowering Ninh Thuan grapes on the market.
The province has also paid particular attention to boosting information about and the popularity of Ninh Thuan grape geographical indication on mass media, at trade fairs and in other events, to build up the image and boost the reputation of Ninh Thuan grapes in domestic and foreign markets.
He said the Department of Science and Technology also authorised the Ninh Thuan Grape Association to take on, manage and develop the geographical indication of Ninh Thuan grape products. To date, the association has issued 30,000 stamps, labels and packages, managed the quality and allocated geographical indication rights to five grape producing, processing and trading units in accordance to Decision 25/QD-SKH&CN dated February 17, 2011, of the Department of Science and Technology. At the same time, the department has coordinated with the Binh Dien Fertilisers Joint Stock Company and the Van Hai Ward People's Committee to organise a scientific seminar for more than 100 grape growers in Van Hai Ward, and joined hands with the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development to issue VietGAP quality standard certificates to one grape-growing individual and nine cooperatives in Van Hai.
Currently, the Department of Science and Technology has been authorised to carry out the second-phase project “Managing and developing geographical indications for Ninh Thuan grapes products” in 2013 and 2014. This is a great chance to promote the popularity and increase the opportunities for Ninh Thuan grape products to reach domestic and international markets.