The S P A C E editorial review team for our culinary segment, #newcuizines, a crowdfunded effort, says it’s important to start from the basics. It’s like this, they say. ‘When in Japan you have to learn to knit, you don’t start by just knitting any old thing.’ Oh? ‘Well yeah. You begin by washing yarn. Get that right, first. Yarn. And how to wash it. This takes time.’ We are nascent here with #newcuizines and um, instead of washing yarn, we will read technical blog posts. Let me explain.
This curated new team of discerning foodies, foodies, they say, ‘with taste,’ lol, deems it appropriate to share a technical blog post today. About fruits. Fruits, specifically, of Vietnam. Why? This publication’s editors could reach only one person today for comment, since everyone is quite busy in our social distancing life currently. That person, occasional contributing writer QN, replied to us over Zalo with a zinger: ‘Fruit! Yes, great idea. OMG they are so awesome!’ ‘Kay cool. We’ll give ourselves some time to get going with more original stories, but for now, this. At this moment in time, our story today is a snippet, excerpted from the excellent writings at: http://www.fao.org/3/ad523e/ad523e02.htm
Fruit production in Vietnam has developed very significantly in recent years. This sector has experienced rapid growth because income per hectare from growing fruits is four to eight times greater than from growing rice. In the rapidly expanding markets of Vietnam, it has been easy to sell fruits so producers have concentrated on quantity rather than quality. However, this system of production is likely to change, because traditional growing techniques are often irregular and inadequate, disease-control measures are poor and markets are changing, with better quality fruit being sought by consumers.
The lack of basic information of the fruits grown in Vietnam is a bottleneck for further development. Although there are numerous kinds of fruits in Vietnam, it is not possible for the author to cover them all in this small publication.
The present document only attempts to compile existing information on six major fruits, four potential fruits, and six minor fruits.
Pertinent information on each fruit includes scientific and vernacular names (in English, French, and five Southeast Asian nations – Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam), general description, origin and distribution, ecology, genetics and improvement, major cultivars in Vietnam, propagation, planting, pests and diseases, fruiting season, harvest and yield, post-harvests operation, problems, and prospects.
1.1 Major Fruits
These are fruits that are most commonly found in Vietnam. They are listed in Table 1. However, the present document covers only six major fruits having the highest priority in development, namely longan, lychee, mandarin, mango, orange and pummelo. See: http://www.fao.org/3/ad523e/ad523e02.htm
Photo: Neha Deshmukh / alamodetheblog.com
1.3 Areas of Production
Areas of fruit trees in Vietnam have been increasing with the changing of cropping system. In addition, with the policy of the Government to cover some areas in the mountainous regions with fruit trees, more areas have been planted to fruit crops.
In 2003, the total areas of fruit trees in Vietnam was 643 550 ha, with total production of 5 695 000 tons (or the increase of 13.8% and 15%, respectively, as compared to 2000). The major fruit commodities are banana, lychee and longan, citrus, pineapple and mango, whose area and production are given below.
Banana: Area: 105 000 ha; total production: 1 365 000 tons; important provinces and area (ha): Ca Mau (7 000), Thanh Hoa (8,000), Song Nai (6 000), Soc Trang (6,500), Tra Vinh (3 400), Can Tho (3 000 ha), An Giang (3 000 ha).
Lychee and Longan: Area: 190 000 ha; total production: 694 000 tons; important provinces and area (ha): Bac Giang (25 500), Ben Tre (16 200), Tien Giang (13 528), Vinh long (9 500), Son La (9 600), Hai Dong (9 400), Quang Ninh (7 000), Hoa Binh (4 500).
Citrus: Area: 73 000 ha; total production 440 000 tons; important provinces and area (in ha): Can Tho (13 181), Ben Tre (6 000), Vinh Long (6 500), Ha giang (4 200), Nghe An (4 700), Dong Thap (3 200).
Pineapple: Area: 40 000 ha (in which 8 000 ha are grown to Cayenne varitey), total production: 337 500 tons; important provinces and area (in ha): Kien Giang (7 710), Tien Giang (6 830), Quang nam (2 320), Thanh Ho (1 600) Vµ Ninh Binh (1 572).
Mango: Area: 46 500 ha, total production: 209 400 tons; important provinces and area (in ha): Tien Giang (6 000), Binh Phuoc (4 205), Song Thap (3 700), Can Tho (3 500), Khanh Hoa (4 000).
In addition, there are relatively large areas in some provinces planted to some specific fruits, namely: plum (Bac Ha – Lao Cai), sweetsop (Lang Son), dragon fruit (Binh Thuan) and grape (Ninh Thuan).