Update: 08:59 | 08/04/2022
About 160,000 tonnes of Bac Giang lychee is scheduled to be sold on the market in 2022. Promoting exports to major markets will be one of the important consumption orientations Bac Giang is pursuing.
Making plans to consume lychee
Lychee flowers have bloomed on the hilly lands of Luc Ngan district, Bac Giang province. Vu Nguyen Binh, director of the Binh Nguyen Clean Agricultural Cooperative based in Quy Thinh village, Quy Son commune, Luc Ngan district said that this year’s weather is favourable and the Covid-19 pandemic has been basically controlled. Farmers have also invested more in lychee, so it is expected that the yield and quality of lychee will increase compared to the previous year.
Bac Giang is expected to have a bumper harvest of lychee.
“Binh Nguyen Clean Agricultural Products Cooperative currently has 4 ha of lychee with an annual output of 300-400 tonnes. This year’s output is expected to reach 450 tonnes. At this time, many agencies, departments and businesses of Bac Giang province have come to the cooperative to discuss their plans to consume lychee,” Vu Nguyen Binh said.
Many other business households in Bac Giang province have also begun to make plans to consume lychee.
Previously, despite being heavily affected by the Covid-19 pandemic in 2021, total Bac Giang lychee consumption reached 215,852 tonnes, an increase of more than 50,850 tonnes compared to 2020. The selling price has always remained stable at an average of 19,800 VND per kg. Total revenue from lychee and ancillary services was estimated at 6.8 trillion VND in 2021.
Vu Nguyen Binh said when the pandemic began to break out in early 2021, many people reduced their investment in lychee due to a fear of not being able to sell their fruit. However, thanks to its established quality and brand name, the consumption of lychee last year was still very positive. This year, people feel more secure to invest more in lychee farming, so the fruit’s output and quality will definitely increase.
In the lychee crop in 2022, Bac Giang province will continue to promote lychee consumption on both the domestic and foreign markets, in association with the promotion and introduction of key products, characteristics and potentials of the province, said Vice Chairman of Bac Giang Provincial People's Committee Phan The Tuan.
Bac Giang expects to harvest about 160,000 tonnes of lychee in 2022, including 1,600 tonnes harvested in the 18 growing areas granted codes by the US for export to the US, Australia, and the EU.
In addition, Bac Giang will continue to grow lychee in 30 growing areas of 219.45 ha with an estimated output of 1,800 tonnes for export to the Japanese market. The province also maintains 149 growing area codes and 300 packaging facilities eligible to export to China with an output of about 95,000 tonnes.
Lychee trees in the province are currently growing well. Early maturing lychee is in the flowering and fruiting stage with a flowering rate of over 90% in Luc Ngan and Tan Yen districts and 80-85% in the remaining districts. Expected harvest time is scheduled for May 15. Lychee from the main season has also flowered with an expected harvest time from June 10 to July 30.
Efforts to enter the US market
Bac Giang province continues to support and promote lychee exports to the markets that it has cooperated with over the years such as the US, the EU, Australia, Japan, the Republic of Korea, China, China, Malaysia, and Thailand. At the same time, the province is seeking to expand exports to new markets. The US remains a market with many positive prospects the province needs to exploit.
Vietnamese lychee entered the US market in 2014. However, the export quantities remain very modest because this is a fastidious market, requiring high quality and with strict quarantine and food safety requirements.
Jolie Nguyen, a representative of a US importer, shared that the US imported 15.1 billion USD of fresh fruit in 2021 with increasing demand for tropical fruits from Vietnam. However, this market has high standards, requiring businesses to do long-term and methodical business with top priority given to quality commitments.
The export of Vietnamese fruit to the US is subject to strict control under many different regulations and laws such as Plant Protection and Quarantine (PPQ), the Plant Protection Act (PPA), Food Safety Modernisation Act (FSMA), the Food Quality Protection Act (FQPA) and others.
Meanwhile, according to the leader of Bac Giang province, northern provinces and cities in Vietnam do not have an irradiation centre approved by the US. Therefore, lychee must be transported to Ho Chi Minh City for packaging, irradiation and export, thus incurring significant transportation and irradiation costs.
In addition, Bac Giang also faces difficulties due to the high cost of air transportation, while shipping by sea takes a long time from 22-28 days, which puts pressure on preserving the fruit.
In the immediate future, to conquer the fastidious market, the people of Luc Ngan are making efforts to improve the quality of lychee due to the planting and care process in accordance with the set standards. Vu Nguyen Binh shared that his cooperative has begun to convert lychee farming to organic cultivation. Once the quality of lychee is ensured, the door to large markets will be more open.
In addition, difficulties in irradiation have been and are being solved by the locality and relevant ministries and agencies in order to gain a fruitful lychee season in the province.