Jasmine fragrant rice to be developed as Vietnam’s national rice brand
VietNamNet Bridge - The Vietnam Food Association (VFA) has decided that Jasmine, a type of fragrant rice, will be developed into the country’s national rice brand.


Vietnam, Jasmine, national brand, VFA


Vietnam is well known as one of the largest rice exporters in the world which mostly exports low- and medium-end rice at low prices. 

Vietnamese farmers grow rice of different varieties. Harvested rice is sold by farmers to merchants, who buy rice from different sources, then mix the rice before selling to food companies for export.

However, VFA has decided to develop Jasmine, a high-quality fragrant rice variety into the nation’s rice brand. 

VFA’s chair Huynh The Nang said it would be not an easy task to build up a national rice brand. However, when considering the structure of the rice exports in the last few years, VFA recognized that the fragrant exports account for an increasingly high proportion of total exports.

Eight years ago, fragrant rice just accounted for 3 percent of total rice exports. However, the figure soared to 26 percent in the first nine months of the year.

VFA believes that developing an existing fragrant rice variety into the national brand is the best way for Vietnam to increase its brand recognition in the world market. Jasmine is the best choice among fragrant rice varieties.

According to Nang, Vietnam previously could sell fragrant rice at $460 per ton, but the price has been increasing rapidly recently. Vietnamese exporters now can sell fragrant rice at $600 per ton.

However, Nang admitted that it would take a long time to turn the idea into reality, though Vietnam’s Jasmine rice is very delicious and has high quality.

In order to make fragrant rice for export, Vietnam would have to organize production on a large scale, and cannot rely on farmers’ small-scale cultivation.

Nang, who is also the general director of the Southern Food Corporation (Vinafood 2), one of two of Vietnam’s largest rice exporters, said Vinafood 2 is planning to join forces with some other enterprises to organize the fragrant rice production in accordance with the large-field model for export.

Some days ago, sources said Vinafood 2 was considering teaming up with Loc Troi Group, formerly the An Giang Plant Protection JSC, to implement the project.

Nguyen Trong Thua, a senior official from the agriculture ministry, said a lot of work would need to be done to develop the nation’s rice brand, from choosing varieties to organizing production, harvesting, processing and preservation.

Vietnam began exporting rice in 1989, but it still does not have a national brand, which is believed to be the reason why the country’s rice is inferior to exports from other countries in importers’ eyes.

TBKTSG


Vietnam, Jasmine, national brand, VFA
 
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