17:45 | 05/11/2015 Trade
Lam Dong Province, the country's largest tea cultivation area, has an oversupply of tea for a number of reasons.
People harvest tea leaves at Tam Chau Tea Farm in Lam Dong Province's Bao Lam District — VNA/VNS Photo: Ly Kha
As of mid-October, tea companies in Lam Dong had stored nearly 5,000 tonnes of unsold tea, including 2,590 tonnes of black tea, 1,660 tonnes of green tea and 688 tonnes of OoLong tea, according to the province.
Black and green tea is mostly exported to Pakistan and Afghanistan, according to Nguyen Van Son, deputy director of the province's Department of Agriculture and Rural Development. Meanwhile, OoLong, a kind of high-quality tea, is mostly exported to Taiwan, and is purchased at VND20,000 (90 US cents) a kilo, down VND400 (2 cents).
Pham Duc Nguyen, director of Phuong Nam Enterprise, said tea companies did not have facilities to do quick tests of tea quality when they bought tea from farmers.
Doan Trong Phuong, deputy chairman of the Viet Nam Tea Association, said: "Tea companies should cooperate with farmers to set up tea material areas and systems to trace tea origin. If tea from a farmer is found having pesticide residue exceeding safety standards, the farmer will not be allowed to participate."
Pham S, vice chairman of the provincial People's Committee, said to solve current problems agencies should develop measures to raise awareness of farmers in applying high technology and safe standards in tea production.
Agencies should find markets in Europe as well as the America for OoLong tea. The province would organise two trade promotion delegations to Europe by the end of this year to promote tea exports, he said.
The Tay Nguyen (Central Highlands) has nearly 24,000ha of tea with annual output of 230,000 tonnes, accounting for about 30 per cent of the country's tea cultivation area./.