Promoting the quintessence of Phu Yen fish sauce making hinh anh 1Phu Yen fish sauce is very high in protein and has a mild sweetness and a typical smell. (Photo: Vietnam Pictorial)
Hanoi (VNA) – With its geographical position adjacent to the East Sea, the central province of Phu Yen has an abundant and diversified source of seafood, including anchovies – a key ingredient that helps locals make delicious fish sauce.

Recently, the craft of fish sauce making in the province has been recognised as a national intangible cultural heritage. This is considered a motivation for them to continue preserving and promoting the quintessence of the traditional sauce-making that has been handed down by generations.

Making fish sauce seems to be simple but requires many skills. Makers must be meticulous, from selecting fish to handling salinity to ensure that the fish sauce is of the highest quality.

Phu Yen fish sauce is very high in protein and has mild sweetness, light yellow colour and a typical smell.

Phu Yen is home to many traditional fish sauce-making villages that have existed for hundreds of years. Some well-known fish sauce brand names include; Ganh Do fish sauce in Song Cau town, Yen and My Quang fish sauce in Tuy An district and Ba Lo fish sauce in Dong Hoa town.

Residents usually make the fish sauce in the 2nd and 3rd months of the lunar calendar, as this is the best season for harvesting fresh anchovies.

From January to March of the lunar calendar, fish sauce-making villages purchase anchovies and decapterus as materials for the new production season.

Promoting the quintessence of Phu Yen fish sauce making hinh anh 2

Ba Muoi Fish Sauce is a fish source establishment in Phu Yen province’s Song Cau town. (Photo: Vietnam Pictorial)

Fish sauce produced in traditional methods is fermented in wooden barrels with the recipe being three parts anchovy and one salt. Makers often mix anchovies and decapterus during the fermentation period to create a better taste.

Building a brand name for Phu Yen fish sauce

According to Dao Tu Xuyen, Director of the provincial Department of Science and Technology, Phu Yen fish sauce is one of the typical products of the province and the south-central coastal region.

“Every year, Phu Yen welcomes nearly 100,000 tourists. In addition to visiting the landscape, visitors also want to enjoy delicious food and shop for specialities as gifts for their relatives,” he said, adding that Phu Yen fish sauce has become a meaningful gift for them to buy before leaving.

Nguyen Hong Son, who resides in Tuy An district’s An Chan commune, said despite having good quality, not many consumers know about the product because it is not advertised widely.

The biggest difficulty of the craft is that the product faces competition from many reputable fish sauce brand names.

To deal with the issue, the provincial Department of Science and Technology has carried out a project on building, managing and developing a collective trademark for fish sauce products in the province.

After two years of implementation, the project has brought many positive results. It has helped register a collective trademark of Phu Yen fish sauce which is granted by the National Office of Intellectual Property and the establishment of two selling points of Phu Yen fish sauce products in Hung Yen and Yen Bai provinces.

“The project has achieved the set target, as the collective brand of Phu Yen Fish Sauce has gained encouraging initial results, creating favourable conditions for the development of products as well as the business of fish sauce establishments in the province,” said Xuyen, who is also the project manager.

Bien Minh Tam, Vice Chairman of Phu Yen Fisheries Association, said that the successful implementation of the project does not only have a positive impact on its members, producers and traders in the province but also provides experience for localities in building and managing a collective trademark for other products as well./.