Vietnam’s pepper export may hit 850 million USD this year and are expected to rise to 900 million USD in 2014, according to the Vietnam Pepper Association (VPA).

At a conference on the sustainable development of the pepper sector on October 18 in Ho Chi Minh City, VPA Chairman Do Ha Nam said by the end of September, the country had already shipped abroad nearly 114,000 tonnes of pepper for 755 million USD.

Maintaining this export rate, the sector’s inventories at the end of the year are expected to stand low, while production in 2014 is forecast to increase just slightly, he said.

Nam added that as demand for pepper will remain steady, it is hoped that the product’s price will stay stable in 2014.

However, from 2015 onwards, global pepper production is forecast to rise sharply, bringing prices down and leading to stricter quality requirements in importing markets.

Therefore, the VPA proposed that local authorised agencies should review their real pepper cultivation area for timely adjustments, while seeking suitable solutions to the planning of pepper production and trade.

The association advised farmers to focus more on quality rather than quantity, heading to a sustainable production process.

It also made a number of recommendations to farmers and businesses to increase production and trade efficiency, including choosing the best time for export, applying market stabilising measures and staying more active in regulating domestic and export price and minimising speculation.-VNA