Vietnamese fresh lychees and longan will be sold in the US from October 6, on the condition that the products meet the country’s strict food safety and hygiene standards.

Under an amended regulation of the Animal and Plants Health Inspection Service (APHIS), an agency of the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), all Vietnamese agricultural products entering the US market must originate from a cultivation area that is registered with and monitored by Vietnam’s Plant Protection Department (PPD). Furthermore, each shipment of products must include a certificate issued by the PPD.

Most importantly, the fruits must be in strict compliance with US regulations on pesticides.

The PPD, which is under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), is working to provide lychee and longan farmers with the appropriate cultivation, harvesting and preservation techniques to meet the requirements of international markets, such as the US.

The Department has teamed up with APHIS in Vietnam to devise a list of regional codes for lychee and longan in the north and south of Vietnam before the products are officially exported to the US.

Vietnam aims to ship approximately 600 tonnes of lychee and 1,200 tonnes of longan to the US per year, according to MARD.

Lychees and longan are Vietnam’s key fruit exports, along with dragon fruit, bananas, mangos, star fruit, rambutan and grapefruit.

Vietnam expects to generate 1.2 billion USD in revenue from fruit and vegetable exports in 2014.-VNA