Tasting sessions. Strolls in orchards. Meetings with producers. Senior Vietnamese leaders and Canadian representatives had an unforgettable experience when they visited the Thanh Binh Dragon Fruit Cooperative and the Evergreen Ninh Thuan Grape Cooperative this past November.
“I am so impressed with the way in which the elected officials presented their co-ops,” said Jared Brading, head of Canadian co-operation in Vietnam. “This illustrates that they are very enthusiastic about their co-ops and their members. In spite of numerous obstacles, they are driven and ready to face challenges, and never stop looking for solutions. ”
New fruit processing plants belonging to cooperatives supported by SOCODEVI are now in operation, which impressed the delegation. As the project was only launched in 2015, it is clear that their structures have significantly developed.
“It is now apparent that with the support of SOCODEVI’ through the VCED project, the cooperatives have undergone a clear and effective transformation.”
-Tran Thanh Nam, Vietnamese Vice-Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development.
New modern facilities
The new processing facilities of Thanh Binh and Evergreen Ninh Thuan, funded by SOCODEVI, boast modern equipment in accordance with HACCP standards.
“ The number of co-op members has expanded rapidly, as has their added value. All of this is owing to improved governance capacity that links together co-op activities with the workings of the market.”In the words of Vietnamese Vice-Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Tran Thanh Nam, “most importantly, the members of these cooperatives know the importance of promoting trade, and have mastered the skills this requires.”
The packaging plant is assisting the Thanh Binh cooperative in becoming entirely self-sufficient from production to preliminary processing.
“Ultimately, when profits increase, farmers benefit!”
-Nguyen Hoai, member of the Thanh Binh cooperative.
Meanwhile, the Evergreen Ninh Thuan complex features functional areas, such as for fruit sorting and grape-based product processing, as well as a unique showroom.
All of this lays the groundwork for greater production capacity, commercial capacity, and market expansion. Evergreen Ninh Thuan is also poised to produce other grape products such as grappa, vinegar, and fresh fruit juice for the domestic market.
The Thanh Binh Co-op is actively seeking new export markets after having successfully entered the Canadian market in 2020.
VCED is a cooperative development project funded by the Government of Canada through Global Affairs Canada and implemented jointly by SOCODEVI and the School of Management of Agriculture and Rural Development II (CMARD II) of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development of Vietnam.
An article written in collaboration with Bich Le Thi.