The added value of geographical indications

10:55 | 13/03/2017 Society

(VEN) - There are more than 900 Vietnamese products associated with 700 different localities nationwide, but only 49 have geographical indication certifications, according to the Ministry of Science and Technology’s National Office of Intellectual Property (NOIP).  

the added value of geographical indications

Doan Hung pomelo from Phu Tho Province attracts consumers

Increasing farm produce value

In early 2017, the renowned longan fruit of Hung Yen Province had its geographical indication certified by the NOIP, becoming the 49th product on the list and the first longan product in Vietnam to obtain such certification. According to Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Ho Thi Kim Thoa, geographical indications not only help promote local specialties, they also contribute to building a national image and increasing international awareness of Vietnamese products.

According to a survey by the European Union (EU), 43 percent or 159 million of surveyed EU consumers said they are willing to pay 10 percent more than the normal price for products with geographical indications; eight percent or 29.6 million people said they are willing to pay an additional 20 percent; and three percent or about 11 million people are willing to pay even 30 percent more.

Therefore, market development, branding and geographical indication building are vital to add value to and improve competitiveness.

Urgent task

Some Vietnamese fruits have been licensed recently to enter a number of discerning foreign markets. While Vietnam has become a world-leading exporter of rice, coffee and pepper, much Vietnamese rice, coffee and pepper products remain unfamiliar to many foreign consumers.

Hanoi People’s Committee Deputy Chairman Nguyen Doan Toan said 90 percent of Vietnamese farm produce exports are sold under foreign brands. There are only about 50 geographical indications and 140 certified labels and collective labels registered for intellectual property protection, few of which have been registered in foreign markets.

Branding and building geographical indicators are urgent tasks for businesses seeking to take advantage of market opportunities. Associate Professor Dr. Le Thi Thu Ha of the Foreign Trade University said the nature of branding is to create uniqueness and build core competitiveness.

Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Ho Thi Kim Thoa said building geographical indications of a product is difficult, but maintaining the product’s brand is more difficult. Vietnamese farm produce should be improved and ensured in terms of food safety and quality through geographical indication building and production control.

Vietnam Coffee - Cocoa Association (VICOFA) Deputy Chairman Do Ha Nam said branding and consumer recognition

add value to products. Without their own brands and low consumer recognition, many Vietnamese coffee products were

exported at a price 10-20 percent lower than that of products of the same kind from other countries.

Bao Ngoc