Diversifying processing forms to increase lychee value

Update: 16:03 | 24/06/2022

(BGO) - Determining that the export of fresh lychee to China in this year's crop would be difficult, many businesses and households in Luc Ngan district of Bac Giang province have actively invested in preservation, packing and drying equipment, making lychee sale more favourable.

Applying new technology

In this year's crop, the Dong Bac Hi-tech Agriculture Co., Ltd (headquartered in Viet Lap commune, Tan Yen district) installed a hot-cold lychee dryer (also known as the drying kiln in container) in Kep village, Hong Giang commune (Luc Ngan). The kiln has a capacity of drying 7 tonnes of fresh lychee per time in about 50 hours, equivalent to 2.2 to 3 tonnes of dried lychee.

 
Diversifying processing forms, increase lychee value, Bac Giang province, export of fresh lychee, this year's crop, new technology, traceability stamp, key lychee area

Processing canned lychee at VIFOCO Import-Export Joint Stock Company.

Pham Thi Thang, Deputy Director of the company, said that in the past, lychees were usually dried mainly with coal, so the peel was often cracked, lowering the quality, thus making it difficult for lychee exports to fastidious markets. Now lychees are dried by electric machines, so the products are clean. Recently, the company has exported 4 tonnes of dried lychee to Germany. "Currently, the company has received many large orders to export lychees to countries such as Japan, Germany, the Netherlands, the US and China", Thang said.

After more than 20 years of drying lychees by coal-fired kilns, in this crop, the household of Vi Thanh Luan in Hang Bong village, Hong Giang commune (Luc Ngan) invested 200 million VND (8,600 USD) in installing an electric lychee drying kiln. It is expected that in this crop, he will produce about 100 tonnes of dried lychee from 350 tonnes of fresh lychee.

According to statistics, Luc Ngan district currently has nearly 3,500 coal-fueled lychee drying kilns, of which 112 have a capacity of 3-50 tonnes per batch. Because it is the beginning of the crop, only 13 kilns are operational, including 4 electric ones, with a total capacity of about 30 tonne per batch. Of the electric kilns, that of Nguyen Van Diep's household in Sang Ben village, Tan Quang commune was installed the earliest, in 2019.

Scaling up hi-tech kilns

However, households are facing difficulties in finding markets for dried lychee products as they have not yet developed a brand with traceability stamp and product packaging.

Diversifying processing forms, increase lychee value, Bac Giang province, export of fresh lychee, this year's crop, new technology, traceability stamp, key lychee area

A delegation of Luc Ngan district’s authorities inspects the quality of dried lychee products of Vi Thanh Luan's household.

After visiting some electric lychee drying kiln models in Luc Ngan in early June, Chairman of the provincial People's Committee Le Anh Duong encouraged businesses and households to boldly invest in new processing technology. In order to replicate these models, he asked Luc Ngan district to develop a plan to support growers in machinery, equipment, and grid infrastructure, as well as help households and cooperatives with designing and printing product packaging, and promoting trade.

Hoang Van Lay, deputy head of the Economic and Infrastructure Division of Luc Ngan district, said that the Luc Ngan electricity company has transformed the power grid system, helping businesses and households to dry lychees easily. The division is also devising a plan to support packaging printing and purchase of drying machines and equipment to replicate the models in the coming time.

There are currently three companies purchasing Luc Ngan lychees to process for export in large quantities, namely Global Food Import-Export Joint Stock Company, VIFOCO Import-Export Joint Stock Company (Bac Giang city) and Rong Do (Red Dragon) Trading and Service Company Limited (Ho Chi Minh City).

The total production of deeply-processed lychees of these three enterprises is more than 4,000 tonnes. Their products, including frozen lychee, lychee juice and canned lychee have been exported to Japan, the US, the Republic of Korea, Australia, Russia and some countries in the European Union (EU).

This year, due to favorable weather, Luc Ngan's lychees saw high rates of flowering and fruiting. The district's fresh fruit output is forecast to reach more than 95,500 tonnes. By the end of June 21, the district had harvested about 18,000 tonnes. The drying and deep processing is really meaningful for the key lychee area of Luc Ngan.

 

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