Vietnamese co-operatives export dragon fruit, pomelo to Canada

Tuesday, Oct 13, 2020 08:00

Ben Tre Green Pomelo Cooperative’s pink lady pomelos on display at a store in Canada. — Photo courtesy of SOCODEVI

Thanh Binh Co-operative’s dragon fruit and Ben Tre Green Pomelo Cooperative’s pink lady pomelo have hit shelves at supermarkets and fruit shops and a juice company in Canada.

It is the first pomelo brand registered by a Vietnamese co-perative to be exported to Canada.

The Ben Tre Green Pomelo Cooperative has also obtained GlobalGAP certification for the fruit.

For Thanh Binh, this was the third shipment to Canada but the first time it fully carried out a dragon fruit order in its own name, from cultivating to transportation and all stages in between.

It set up a new packing unit in August.

Getting rid of intermediaries is expected to bring its members greater benefits.

Both co-operatives have fully complied with requisite safety standards.

Thomas Lam at Arc-En-Ciel store, said: “This is the third time we have received shipments from Thanh Binh Coop in Viet Nam. The reason we keep buying dragon fruit from this coop is because of its very good quality and taste. Everything meets customers’ expectations here.

“This was our first purchase of pink lady pomelo from Ben Tre Coop, and the pomelos are so beautiful.

“We used to import pomelos from the US and China and their pomelos are a lot cheaper, but these Vietnamese pomelos are outstanding.

“We have received very good feedback from customers who want us to keep supplying these Vietnamese fruits. So in future we will surely keep buying from these co-ops. And if you can keep this high level of quality, you can compete very well in the Canadian market”

Patricia Masbourian, owner of Fruiterie Chez Nino at Atwater Market in Montreal, said, “The pomelos we have just received from Viet Nam are of a very high quality, very juicy and very fragrant.

“We are used to getting this fruit from everywhere, including China, Brazil and Israel. But these pomelos are at another level with their exceptional texture and level of juice. It is the same for the dragon fruit. The quality is impressive with the fruit being firm and the skin being nice. And, it is very juicy.”

The two co-operatives are among five new ones established under the framework of the Vietnam Cooperative Enterprise Development Project in Soc Trang, Binh Thuan, Ninh Thuan, Lam Dong, and Ben Tre provinces since 2015.

Funded by Canada and jointly implemented by SOCODEVI and the School of Management for Agriculture and Rural Development II, the project has helped improve cooperatives’ competitiveness through a variety of activities such as training for farmers, strengthening of governance, upgrades to equipment, marketing, branding, and others. — VNS

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