A lychee packaging facility in Bac Giang province (Photo: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – Australia’s Department of Agriculture and Water Resources has certified the Hanoi Irradiation Centre to irradiate Vietnamese lychees exported to the market.

The Plant Protection Department under Vietnam’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development received official recognition from the Australian department on June 20.

The lychees will go through irradiation treatment in Hanoi instead of being shipped to the south, which helps reduce transport cost and time.

The outcome was attributed to the close cooperation between the Vietnamese Plant Protection Department, Australian competent agencies, and the Australian Embassy in Vietnam, as well as the active engagement of the Hanoi Irradiation Centre and businesses.

Head of the Plant Protection Department Hoang Trung said the centre will help lychee exporters reduce cost by around 16 million VND (over 717.4 USD) per tonne.

According to Australian regulations, to enter the market, the Vietnamese fresh lychees must apply cultivation measures to mitigate harmful organisms and ensure quality and safety under the Good Agricultural Practices (GAP).

Farmers have to record the production process to facilitate the trace of their fruits’ origin. The fresh lychees must be transported to the registered packaging and labeling facilities for further examination at the Plant Protection Department.

The fruits will be treated at Son Son and An Phu irradiation companies and Hanoi Irradiation Centre. The Vietnamese plant inspection agencies will grant phytosanitary certificates to batches that satisfy the market’s requirements.

Irradiation is considered a safe technology that helps kill all bacteria and microorganisms and keep fruit fresh for longer periods, even up to a few months.-VNA