Mr. Nguyen Tanh, a dragon fruit farmer in village 5, Ham Liem commune (Ham Thuan Bac) said that in the early days of the new year, dragon fruit price in the area was very high, ranging from VND15- 20 thousand/kg (depending on type).
While the batch of dragon fruits before Tet holiday was the most expected of the year, most farmers had to sell them at very low prices, only VND5-6 thousand/kg on average, resulting in heavy losses.
Mr. Tanh's family had 350 dragon fruit pillars with harvest yield of about 3 tons on December 20, but they only sold for VND 5,000/kg, while price of dragon fruit must be over VND 10,000/kg to make a profit.
According to Mr. Tanh, it is now impossible to predict the consumption of dragon fruits. Therefore, even though the dragon fruit price is now purchased at a high level, most farmers do not have products for sale.
Ms. Nguyen Thi Hanh, from village 6, Ham Chinh commune (Ham Thuan Bac) also said that after Tet, few gardens have ripe dragon fruits for sale. Luckily, her family has 150 pillars of ripe dragon fruits to be harvested with output of nearly 2 tons.
Binh Thuan is the "capital" of dragon fruits of the country, with an area of more than 30,000 hectares and an output of about 600 thousand tons/year. Currently, dragon fruits of Binh Thuan are mostly exported to China market.
According to Binh Thuan Department of Industry and Trade, the reason why dragon fruit prices in the area in the middle of January 2021 were low, ranging from VND 5,000-7,000/kg, and continued to drop to VND 2,000 - 5,000/kg at the end of the month, was due to slow circulation in border markets and slow consumption. Besides, China is still proceeding measures to prevent the Covid-19 pandemic.
In addition, China also raised barriers to phytosanitary measures, increasingly stricter regulations, in which, requires certification of growing areas. Since then, businesses from China also ordered less dragon fruit.
However, according to Mr. Bien Tan Tai, Deputy Director of Binh Thuan Department of Industry and Trade, since the beginning of February 2021, consumption demand from China has increased, dragon fruit has been scarce, so the price inched up from VND 9,000 to 11,000/kg. And from the days approaching Tet until now, the price of dragon fruit has been at VND 15,000 - 20,000/kg.
Businesses purchasing dragon fruits in Binh Thuan province also confirmed that at the beginning of the year, they received many orders for dragon fruits from China with relatively high prices.
Ms. Pham Thi Xinh, Director of Nguyen Thuan Agricultural Import-Export Co., Ltd., a unit specializing in purchasing dragon fruits for export to China, said that the sharp increase in dragon fruit prices is very favorable for businesses to promote purchasing, as well as helping dragon fruit growers have income. However, there are not enough dragon fruits for export now.
Also according to the dragon fruit buyers, in the coming time, even if the dragon fruit price remains high as at present, it will still be unpredictable because orders from China are based on days or weeks rather than monthly or yearly contracts.
According to Binh Thuan Department of Industry and Trade, in January 2021, dragon fruit export turnover through official channel in the province was 608 tons with the value of US$ 693,500, down 12.86% in value and 17.66% in volume compared to the same period in 2020. In addition to the pairs of border gates: Tan Thanh - Po Chai, Coc Nam - Lung Vai, Po Nhung - Dau Ai and Na Hinh - Keo Ai, which were closed for Tet holiday from 12-17/ 2/2021, other border gates in Lao Cai, Lang Son, Quang Ninh, Ha Giang provinces have been open, with measures to prevent disease Covid-19.
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