Thu. May 19th, 2022

Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta provinces should make zoning plans for
pineapple cultivation and ensure there is a stable market for the fruit,
delegates told a forum held in Hau Giang province recently.

Dr. Mai Thanh Phung, chief of the National Agriculture Extension
Centre’s Ho Chi Minh City office, said pineapple is among the world’s
most important fruits and has an output of 20 million tonnes a year,
half of this grown in Asia.
 
“Though Vietnam is among the
top 10 pineapple producing countries, it does not figure in the list of
pineapple exporting countries,” he said.

He attributed this to the lack of post-harvest and processing technologies in the country and inconsistent quality.

The country has around 40,000ha under pineapple, which yield more than
500,000 tonnes a year, with the south accounting for 90 percent of the
area, he said.
 
Many farmers in Vi Thanh city and Long My
district of Hau Giang, and Tan Phuoc district of Tien Giang province
have benefited from growing the fruit.

Nguyen Van Dam of the
Tan Phuoc agriculture extension office said pineapple is grown on 14,800
ha in the province, mostly in his district.

With an average yield of 20 tonnes per hectare, farmers earn a profit of 25 million VND per hectare a year, he said.

“The province plans to expand the area under pineapple to 16,000 ha
and increase application of VietGap standards in growing the fruit,” he
said.

But delegates agreed that the lack of stable markets for
the fruit, volatile prices, diseases, and poor post-harvest and
processing technologies threaten sustainable development.

Nguyen Trinh Nhat Hang of the Southern Fruit Research Institute said
local authorities should cooperate with related agencies to provide
pineapple farmers with market information and advanced farming
techniques, and create a sustainable consumption strategy for the fruit.

Provinces should make zoning plans for VietGap pineapple
cultivation areas and adopt policies to encourage farmers to apply
VietGap standards, which will improve the fruit quality and enable the
country to meet large export orders, she said.

Phung urged
agricultural extension centres to organise training courses to raise
awareness among farmers about GAP and instruct them in GAP
production techniques.

“Scientists should strengthen research to create new high quality seedlings and improve cultivation practices,” he said.

He called for establishing closer links between enterprises and farmers, with the former ensuring outlets for the fruit.

Vo Mai, deputy chairwoman of the Vietnam Gardening Association, urged
businesses to focus on developing brands for Vietnamese pineapple.

Farmers called on the Government to give them preferential loans and
build more pineapple processing factories to enable exports so that they
could feel more secure.-VNA

By vivian