Mekong Delta localities ensure traceability for export agricultural products

  • Thu, 28 March 2024

Mekong Delta localities ensure traceability for export agricultural products

Mekong Delta localities are promoting agricultural product traceability in order to incorporate them into supply chains, ensure safe processing and export, and build consumer trust in Vietnamese agricultural products.

The Mekong Delta is a major hub for rice, aquatic products, and key fruits for export so effective management of the traceability of agricultural products is necessary.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, the country has issued 6,883 export farming area codes for 25 products to 11 markets. The Mekong Delta has the largest number of farming area codes with 3,975 codes in operation.

Nguyễn Văn Mẫn, director of the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development of Tiền Giang Province, said that 528 farming area codes and packaging facility codes of the province are implemented in accordance with current regulations.

Over 180 farming area codes are issued to Chinese markets from seven types of crops such as jackfruit, dragon fruit, mango, watermelon, rambutan, longan, and durian.

The provincial department has established inter-disciplinary inspection teams to inspect compliance with regulations on the use and maintenance of farming area codes and packaging facility codes.

Tiền Giang Province is also implementing a pilot program to develop database management software for durian farming areas.

This software will display information about durian farming areas on maps, serving as a basis for expanding mapping to cover all durian and key crop farming areas in the province.

Bến Tre Province currently has 41 farming areas issued with 84 codes. Some agricultural products with issued farming area codes, such as coconut, green skin grapefruit, rambutan, mango, and durian, have been exported to Europe, the United States, New Zealand, Australia, Japan, South Korea, Thailand, and China.

Võ Văn Nam, head of the province’s Plant Protection and Cultivation Sub-department of Bến Tre Province, said that farming area codes and packaging facility codes will guarantee the traceability of export agricultural products.

The Department of Agriculture and Rural Development of Bến Tre Province is promoting localities to monitor the production and manage farming area codes.

At present, consumers are increasingly concerned about traceability and food safety, as the prevailing trend prioritises health, disease prevention, and the urgent need for a healthier living environment.

According to a representative of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), product transparency will be a factor in the purchase of agricultural products.

When consumers want to know about the products, they can trace the final product to its original production location, and review each stage in processing and distribution using a traceability code printed on the packaging.

Consumers can enter the traceability code on the product's website to find information, or use a smartphone with traceability software installed to scan the traceability code.

Đỗ Thanh Hiệp, director of Hòa Lệ Clean Dragon Fruit Cooperative in Hàm Thuận Bắc District, Bình Thuận Province, said that when buying a dragon fruit from Hoà Lệ Cooperative, consumers can trace information such as production batch, producing unit, types of fertilisers and pesticides applied, types of certificates and transaction information about harvest dates, production, packaging, expiry dates.

A representative of the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development of Bình Thuận Province said that there are many enterprises and cooperatives with reputable brands in the province. These include the Hoà Lệ Dragon Fruit Cooperative, Hải Nam Limited Liability Company, and Phan Thiết fish sauce, all of which apply traceability labels to their products. Products with traceability labels increase competitiveness, stimulate consumer purchasing, and maximise investment cost savings.