New Zealand holds workshop to boost Vietnam’s dragon fruit exports

01:00 | 17/06/2019
The Ho Chi Minh City-based workshop last week was New Zealand’s latest effort to improve the fruit production chain in Vietnam.
new zealand holds workshop to boost vietnams dragon fruit exports
Dragon fruit trade is one of New Zealand's core development areas in Vietnam

The event, themed Successful Development and Commercialisation of Premium Fruit Varieties, brought together close to 100 participants from government agencies, research institutions, farmers’ associations, s well as agricultural and export firms from both Vietnam and New Zealand.

Experts at the workshop shared lessons from the six-year New Premium Fruit Variety Development Project, which was launched by the New Zealand Aid Programme in Vietnam with NZD$8.1 million ($5.6 million) of funding.

Workshop participants also focused on pathways to commercialise new varieties of premium fruit and leverage high-value fruit varieties based on New Zealand’s success stories. Other areas such as intellectual property protection and branding models were also discussed.

new zealand holds workshop to boost vietnams dragon fruit exports
Panel speakers from Vietnam and New Zealand shared their experience

According to experts, New Zealand’s New Premium Fruit Variety Development Project has built farming methods that have doubled per hectare yield, reduced damage, and extended shelf life for Vietnam’s fruits. The project’s robust and innovative research also minimised the impact of canker disease and the use of chemicals in Vietnam.

The two countries are also planning to develop new dragon fruit varieties that can leverage New Zealand’s farming expertise. The goal is for Vietnam to export fruits to high-value markets around the world.

“This project is one of New Zealand’s signature projects in Vietnam because it successfully brings together New Zealand’s agricultural expertise with one of Vietnam’s most iconic products – the dragon fruit,” said New Zealand Ambassador to Vietnam Wendy Matthews.

new zealand holds workshop to boost vietnams dragon fruit exports
Wendy Matthews, New Zealand Ambassador to Vietnam, said the two countries have great potential to work together on fruit trade

For this project, New Zealand partnered with two Vietnamese research organisations, namely the Southern Fruit Research Institute and the Sub-Institute for Agricultural Engineering and Post-Harvest Technology.

In Vietnam, New Zealand provides support in the areas of agriculture, knowledge, and skills, as well as disaster risk management. The total investment between 2015 and 2018 was NZD$26.6 million ($17.32 million).

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By Nam Phuong

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