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Friday, November 27, 2020

Thailand returns Vietnam’s fruit consignments due to tightened regulations

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HCMC – After Thailand’s Food and Drug Administration issued new regulations on plant protection drug residues, some outbound shipments of dragon fruit from Vietnam to the neighboring country have been returned.

Dang Phuc Nguyen, general secretary of the Vietnam Fruit and Vegetables Association, said that the batch of dragon fruits exported by a firm in Binh Thuan Province to Thailand was returned as the farm product failed to meet regulations on plant protection drug residues.

The new regulations on residues introduced by the Thai Food and Drugs Administration came into force from August this year, according to the Import-Export Department under the Ministry of Industry and Trade.

Fresh products imported to the country will be classified into three groups—very high-risk, high-risk and low-risk—in line with the regulations.

Fresh food, producers, sellers and exporters will be a part of the very high-risk group if their products fail to comply with the regulations on plant protection drug residues.

Some 30 agricultural products such as oranges, dragon fruit, pears, litchis and grapes, of 180 Chinese firms have been added to the very high-risk group, said the department.

Truong Quang An, director of Tam Vu Cooperative in Long An Province’s Chau Thanh District, said that Thailand has imposed stricter regulations on imports, but the selling prices were not revised up correspondingly. The price of white-flesh dragon fruit shipped to Thailand stands at VND22,000 per kilogram, An said.

Up to now, Thailand has granted licenses for importing four types of Vietnamese fruits— dragon fruit, mango, longan and litchi—into the country.

Statistics from the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development indicated that even though Vietnam’s exports to many markets dropped sharply due to the coronavirus pandemic, the country saw the outbound shipments of fruits and vegetables to Thailand over the first six months of the year skyrocket by 234% year-on-year.

Between January and June, Vietnam earned US$79 million from fruit and vegetable exports to Thailand, while these farm products worth US$23 million were shipped to the neighboring country during the same period last year.

By Nam Binh

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