VIETNAM – The central province of Thanh Hoa in Vietnam is implementing measures to improve the quality of its farm produce to meet requirements of export markets, thus tapping advantages from free trade agreements (FTA) that Vietnam has signed.

Local exporters have pointed out that agricultural production regions in Thanh Hoa have been small in scale with unequal quality of products.

At the same time, agricultural production has yet to follow planning, making it difficult for management and infrastructure development.

They pointed out the regulatory gap leading to unstable supply and inhibiting the application of science and technology, hence an increase in cost and hitches in quality, food safety and disease management.

Experts have advised that in order to meet standards and overcome technical barriers in export markets, Thanh Hoa should make new breakthroughs in production scale and production process, while giving adequate investment in processing activities to enhance farm produce’s values in the market.

Recognizing the problems, the province has planned to organize production following market demand, while focusing on ensuring a safe production process to enhance competitiveness.

According to the provincial Department of Industry and Trade, the FTAs have brought about great opportunities for agricultural products of Vietnam and Thanh Hoa in particular.

An Import and Export Management Division representative has said that in order to do away with difficulties facing local exporters, it has supported them in implementing recommendations from the Ministry of Industry and Trade.

It has also authorized agencies in border gates to regulate the shipping of goods to border gates, thus avoiding the overloading situation.

The representative held that currently, local farm produce has become competitive enough to reach choosy markets such as Japan, the US and EU countries.

Local businesses are advised to continue coordinating closely together in popularizing regulations in origin traceability and labeling as well as in relevant matters to production regions, thus enhancing the quality of products and meeting standards of targeted markets.

The region will give directions and guidelines to local farmers and production facilities on how to produce goods in line with the market’s demand and conduct production process towards VietGap and safe standards, thus improving competitiveness of their products.

Meanwhile, the province will also implement technical solutions in cultivation to reduce cost, especially by applying technologies in producing, processing and storing products, thus conquering most choosy markets, diversifying markets and enhancing the value and efficiency of production activities.