The northwestern mountainous province of Son La hopes to make longan its key farm produce. (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA)
– The northwestern mountainous province of Son La has been searching for a stable market for its fresh agricultural products during an event underway at Big C Thang Long supercenter in Hanoi until July 27, hoping to make longan its key farm produce.

The first “Son La Longan and Safe Farm Produce Week” was opened by the provincial People’s Committee on July 21.

The festival will display 20 kiosks featuring longan, as well as other fruits, vegetables, and processed food products of Son La. These include many VietGAP and GlobalGAP-certified products, namely the longan, mango, avocado, banana, luffa, red dragon fruit, cabbage, tomato, garlic, and green pea.

Organisers also set up a special stall to introduce some off-season vegetables from the province’s Van Ho district, including cabbage, wild bean, chayote, tomato, and gourd. These products were grown under a programme “Support Farmers in Van Ho district, Son La province”, funded by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research and the Central Group Vietnam which looks to foster the development of off-season vegetable farming and improve the livelihood for smallholders in the northwestern mountainous region.

Son La has maintained 15 safe longan farming areas, producing about 5,000 tonnes of longan certified by VietGAP annually. Of which, 1,500 tonnes are granted exportation codes to the United States, Australia, Japan, the Republic of Korea, and other ASEAN countries, said Vu Duc Thuan, Deputy Director of the provincial Department of Planning and Investment.

Last year, the province had nine products granted Trademark Registration Certificates, including Song Ma longan, Son La coffee, Phu Yen orange, Yen Chau mango, Moc Chau Snow Shan tea, Moc Chau safe vegetables, Moc Chau oolong tea, Ta Xua tea, and Son La honey.

In 2018, it plans to build trademarks for 12 more specialties like Mai Son sugar apple, Moc Chau avocado, Son Tra assam apple, Thuan Chau taro, Son La passion fruit, Son La plum, and Son La sturgeon.

“Son La hopes that, through the Big C outlets, the certified farm produce of the province in general and its brand products in particular will be widely known in the country and abroad. The increases in production and consumption will help improve incomes and livelihoods for ethnic minority people in the locality,” Thuan noted. –VNA