Partnership for sustainable production and trade of Vietnamese pepper launched

Saturday, Apr 03, 2021 10:58

A farmer from Ea Bhok Commune in Dak Lak Province’s Cu Kuin District harvests pepper. A memorandum of understanding has been signed aiming at supporting collaboration for sustainable pepper development in Viet Nam VNA/VNS Photo

A memorandum of understanding (MoU) on a partnership for the sustainable production and trade of Vietnamese pepper for 2021-2025 has been signed between the Plant Protection Department (PPD) and Sustainable Spices Initiative (SSI) and IDH Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH).

Speaking at the signing ceremony, Nguyen Quy Duong, Deputy head of the PPD under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, said the MoU aimed to generate about 60,000 tonnes of pepper, 75 per cent of exported pepper and help 25 per cent of farmers access safe production models and improve their livelihoods.

“One of the top priorities of the signing MoU between the three parties is to support small and medium enterprises and farmers to control pesticide residue in pepper, forming production linkages and promote communication and expansion of safe pepper production models,” Duong said on Tuesday.

This type of partnership would ensure sustainable production, meeting market requirements, he said, adding that each side would bring into full play its strength.

Per the MoU, the PPD is authorised to promote sustainable pepper production in Viet Nam through management and guidance for responsible use of pesticides. It is supposed to strengthen the capacity of public partners for scaling up sustainable pepper production. The department will also promote safe production links, monitor food safety and traceability of pepper for export.

The SSI is responsible for working with the European Spice Association (ESA) and the American Spice Association (ASTA) on market requirements and encouraging member companies to invest in sustainable production in Viet Nam.

The IDH Sustainable Trade Initiative is expected to provide technical and financial support to activities under a public-private partnership for pepper.

“Vietnamese pepper is an extremely important source of raw materials for SSI and SSI is committed to contributing to the sustainable development of the Vietnamese pepper industry, thereby helping realise our ultimate goal of all pepper products sustainable and ensure food safety," said Alfon Van Gulick, Executive Chairman of SSI.

Huynh Tien Dung, director of IDH in Viet Nam said it was not the first time the SSI had engaged with Viet Nam.

“In recent years, through the connection of IDH, SSI has co-operated with the public-private partnership of the pepper industry in a number of activities including co-organising public-private dialogue forums, setting up material for training of farmers and co-ordinating with domestic companies in implementing pepper chain projects,” he said.

According to Nguyen Nam Hai, Chairman of the Vietnam Pepper Association, Viet Nam's pepper output accounts for 45 per cent of the world's figure and export volume accounts for 65 per cent of globally traded pepper. However, the quality of pepper is still a problem.

"The development of sustainable pepper production is an indispensable requirement for our partners to feel more secure about the quality of Vietnamese pepper," Hai said. — VNS

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