Vietnamese dragon fruits  (Photo cafef.vn)

Can Tho (VNA) – Can Tho city in the Mekong Delta has called on companies to strengthen cooperation with local farmers in boosting the export of fruits, especially the city’s three key fruits of longan, star apple and mango.

The city grows 98,000 tonnes of fruits in more than 17,120ha of orchards, with mango accounting for 2,710ha, star apple for 1,324ha and longan for 1,838ha, according to the municipal People’s Committee.

Dao Anh Dung, Vice Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee, said Can Tho would create optimal conditions for companies to collaborate with farmers to consume fruits domestically and export.

It would establish fruit cooperatives which would collaborate with companies, he said.

This year the city plans to export some longan, star apple and mango, he added.

Nguyen Dinh Tung, General Director of Vina T&T Import – Export Service Trading Co Ltd, said his HCM City-based company buys large volumes of fresh fruits from Can Tho for export, but from traders and not directly from farmers.

For companies to offer guaranteed outlets for farmers, the latter need to sign agreements, he said.

Le Van Thiet, deputy head of the Plant Protection Department, said the country’s five major fruits – dragon fruit, longan, mango, litchi, and star apple – have been exported to several demanding markets such as the US, Chile, Japan and New Zealand.

Vietnam has exported 230 tonnes of star apple to the US since the first batch was shipped last December, he said, adding it plans to export its first batch of mango to the US next month.

Can Tho has zoned areas such as Cat Hoa Loc mango-growing area in Co Do district and star apple-growing areas in Phong Dien and Binh Thuy districts. Phong Dien has more than 1,000ha under the fruit.

Pham Thi Minh Hieu, head of the Can Tho City Plant Cultivation and Protection Sub-department, said the city has tied up with a fruit export company to guarantee outlets for the two, and it is inspecting their orchards.

The sub-department would instruct members of the cooperative and club in farming techniques that meet export requirements, she said.-VNA