Vietnam to resume vegetable exports to EUUpdate: 9/26/2018
Local vegetable and fruit exporters will be able to ship their products to the EU again starting June 30, as the Plant Protection Department has agreed to grant quarantine certificates for them after suspending the procedure for more than a year.
The department stopped issuing the certificates in late March, 2012 in a bid to prevent fresh Vietnamese vegetables and fruit from being completely banned in the European market.
In early 2012, five types of such products, including basil, sweet pepper, celery, bitter gourd and coriander failed to meet EU food hygiene and safety regulations.
The EU side thus announced that they would stop importing Vietnamese produce if five more batches of exports were found violating regulations.
The plant protection agency thus decided to temporarily suspend the quarantine certificate issuing, in order to avoid having other fruit, such as blue dragon or grapefruit, added to the EU’s blacklist.
“But thing will return to normal as of June 30,” Nguyen Van Nga, head of the Zone 2 Plant Quarantine Sub-Department of the Plant Protection Department, was quoted by Saigon Times Online as saying on May 7.
Nga also advised local exporters to source their products from reliable farmers which grow produce under the Good Agricultural Practice (GAP) standards.
$1 billion in exports targeted
Vietnam exported some US$187 million worth of vegetables and fruit in the first quarter of this year, a 10 percent increase compared to the same period last year, according to the Vietnam Vegetable and Fruit Association.
Global consumption of the produce is expected to increase by up to 5 percent this year, and the Vietnamese vegetable and fruit exporting sector has thus targeted a $1 billion export turnover this year, the association said.
Vietnamese vegetables and fruit are now available in 40 markets worldwide.