Promoting Export of Binh Thuan Dragon Fruit

4:48:00 PM | 29/7/2014

The dragon fruit is considered the main crop, significantly contributing to poverty reduction of Binh Thuan. Binh Thuan dragon fruit has recently gained recognition of geographical indication and is exported to about 20 countries around the world; affirming its brand on the international arena. Accordingly, it is essential to preserve, protect and promote the geographical indication "Binh Thuan" for dragon fruit.
According to the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, Binh Thuan dragon fruit today is mainly used for export. Through surveys, Chinese market consumes a lot of Binh Thuan dragon fruit (about 60-65 percent); however, most enterprises in the province do business under the form of border trade so the export turnover is not calculated exactly.
Regarding trading activities across border trade, although exporting to the Chinese market sometimes gets stuck and the price is plummeted; however, it remained quite stable. The export promotion (including quota and border trade) has created a positive impact, helping Binh Thuan dragon fruit flourished over time. Particularly in recent years, production and export quota of dragon fruit in Binh Thuan province are gradually increasing year by year. In 2013, Binh Thuan businesses exported 25,917.1 tonnes, reaching the quota of US$22.63 million. Binh Thuan dragon fruit exported to 15 markets, mainly in Asian markets; expansion of markets in Europe and America still faces many difficulties due to factors such as: the long transit time shortens the consuming time and lowers down the quality; advertising campaign is not effective enough and technical barriers of food safety. 
According to Mr Tran Van Nhut, Director of the Department of Industry and Trade, China is currently still the main consumer with the yield of 15,041 tonnes (account for 58 percent), reaching turnover of US411.68 million (account for 51.6 percent). Indonesia ranks second (4,274 tonnes, US$ 3.36 million); then Thailand (2,162 tonnes, US$1.407 million); Netherlands (1,903 tonnes, US$43.69 million) and a number of other markets such as Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong and Canada. Especially, Vietnam recently extended other consuming markets for Binh Thuan dragon fruit such as Myanmar, Qatar and Spain; however, the exporting quantity is not significant. Though the quantity and turnover in the emerging markets is not remarkable, but it proves the dynamics of businesses in extending markets.
Currently Binh Thuan dragon fruit has had geographical indications and exported to about 20 countries around the world, including the tough ones with high value such as the US, the Netherlands, Japan. In order to preserve, protect and promote the geographical indication "Binh Thuan" for dragon products to enhance the reputation of Binh Thuan dragon fruit; Binh Thuan Province People's Committee has assigned departments and localities to focus on guiding the implementation of measures to improve product quality, meet all standards of VietGAP, GlobalGAP. At the same time, the province also attracts the investment in irradiation plants, heating plants to meet consumer markets in the United States, Japan, South Korea. In addition to directing the registration application for Binh Thuan dragon fruit brand to 13 countries and territories namely the UK, Germany, France, the Netherlands, Japan, Korea, Singapore, China, Thailand, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia), the province also approves and estimates funding for the project "Building a model of stamping geographical indications for Binh Thuan dragon fruit products" with a total budget of VND2,076 million, including VND1,046 million from the State budget. The scheme is being implemented by Binh Thuan dragon fruit Association.
To improve the competitiveness of enterprises, the province regularly organises exporting and market training courses. Plus, the province strengthens trade promotion activities aimed at maintaining and expanding export markets; in which focuses on promoting export of dragon fruit into Chinese market legally and gradually restricting cross-border trade which has very high risks.  
Truong Thanh