15:02 | 12/01/2017 Trade
(VEN) - Ministries, sectors, and localities have seen initial results from their efforts to seek outlets for agricultural products through supply-demand connections. To further promote agricultural sales, however, it is necessary to tighten control over the quality of products as well as the linkage between the state, scientists, traders, and farmers.
Taking the initiative in connections
Litchi is one of Hai Duong Province’s major agricultural products significantly contributing to the local economy. The average output of litchis grown in Hai Duong is 50,000 tonnes per year. In 2016, the province organized five conferences aiming to promote litchi sales in Hanoi, Lao Cai, Ho Chi Minh City, and southern provinces.
Following these conferences, some supermarkets purchased large volumes of Hai Duong’s litchis, for example Co.opmart 55 tonnes, Fivimart 35 tonnes, Vinmart 30 tonnes, and Big C 25 tonnes. The province has also cooperated with foreign supermarkets, exporters, and retailers such as Kook Best, Sunny Mart, Chef Kawakami (Japan), and CJ Group (Republic of Korea), while at the same time seeking opportunities to export litchis to the US.
Binh Thuan is home to the largest dragon fruit plantations nationwide, with annual output averaging 500,000 tonnes. The province exports 80-85 percent of its annual dragon fruit output, but exports via official channels account for just two to three percent. However, Binh Thuan has seen a decline in annual litchi production output as well as exports via official channels. To improve the situation, the province has encouraged local businesses to boost exports to China and India. It has also promoted linkages between producers and distributors in order to set up new sales channels. Next year, Binh Thuan will concentrate on supporting business efforts to improve their trading capabilities and intensify trade promotion and advertising to facilitate sales.
In recent years, the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) has organized many events to connect producers and distributors of agricultural products. Within three years (2014-2016), the Agency for Regional Industry Development under the MoIT organized nine meetings nationwide with more than 250 memorandums of understanding signed.
Regarding the results of supply-demand connection activities, a representative of the Co Do Moc Chau Tea Joint Stock Company in Son La Province said that the company currently exports 95 percent of its tea output to Chinese Taipei and Japan and sells just five percent in the domestic market. In recent times, however, export prices have dropped while production costs remained high. Therefore, the company has shifted to boosting domestic sales rather than concentrating on exports. Through some events organized by the provincial Department of Industry and Trade, the company has established relations with domestic distributors to promote sales.
Tightening quality control
Supply-demand connection activities have not only promoted linkages between managers, producers, and distributors, but also contributed to the implementation of the market stabilization program.
According to a representative of the MoIT’s Domestic Market Department, however, the quality of agricultural as well as rural industrial products is unequal and their packaging remains unattractive to consumers, especially in major cities. To make their products firmly positioned in distribution networks, producers need to invest in modernizing production and use clean, environmentally friendly technologies. Along with enhancing product quality, they should pay greater attention to improving packaging. The industry and trade departments of cities and provinces need to assist businesses’ brand building and promotion efforts.
Sharing this opinion, a representative of the Quang Ninh Province Industry and Trade Department said the linkage between the state, scientists, traders, and farmers is crucial to boosting agricultural sales. It is also necessary to put in place appropriate state support policies and improve the legal framework to encourage long-term investment in agricultural value chains. Agricultural production should be organized according to the model of cooperatives to reduce production costs, increase productivity, and improve product quality.
“As memorandums of understanding signed between producers and distributors offer a good solution for selling agricultural products, its implementation should be monitored not only by its stakeholders but also by local industry and trade departments,” the representative of the Quang Ninh Province Industry and Trade Department said.
MoIT’s Domestic Market Department:
Producers need to use modern equipment and clean, environmentally friendly technologies to ensure the quality of
agricultural and rural industrial products in an effort to make them firmly positioned in distribution networks.