VCN - Many useful experiences in agricultural exports to the EU market were shared by experts at the webinar "Exporting Agricultural Products to EU during Covid: Challenges and best practices”, held on the afternoon of October 13.
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Speaking at the seminar, Mr. Tran Phu Lu, Vice Director of the Investment and Trade Promotion Center (ITPC), said despite many negative impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic, the exports of agricultural products recorded high growth. Especially in the EU market, after the EVFTA was signed, Vietnam's export turnover of agricultural, forestry and fishery products to this market has always seen two-digit growth.
Between January and August of 2021, Vietnam exported US$1.5 billion in agricultural, forestry and fishery products. Of which the German market reached US$458 million and the Netherlands reached US$363 million.
Many agricultural products have been officially exported to new markets such as pomelos from Bac Giang exported to Russia; Hai Duong lychees exported to Japan, Singapore, the EU; bananas exported to Korea
“This proves that if Vietnamese agricultural products are grown according to safety standards such as Global Gap and organic, they can all meet the quality standards of fastidious markets and Vietnamese agricultural products still have a great export potential," said Tran Phu Lu.
According to Tran Phu Lu, Vietnam's fruit and vegetable products account for a very modest proportion in the EU market, while this is the largest fruit and vegetable importer in the world. In the first quarter of 2021, the EU’s imports of fruit and vegetables made up 46.3% of the world's total imports, but Vietnam only contributed 0.2%. The is due to Vietnam's regulations on technical barriers and fierce competition from countries in the region that have the same strengths in tropical fruits and vegetables.
The consultant of New Amsterdam Consult Co., Ltd., Hoang Phi Long said businesses should pay attention to opening a representative office or sending a representative to EU to easily introduce goods and sign contracts or seek companies in cooperation. “This will help increase customer insights in the EU, and be convenient for exchanging information, drafting and signing deals,” said Hoang Phi Long.
In fact, after the EVFTA took effect, many Vietnamese enterprises opened offices in European countries to promote exports to this market. For example, Trung An Hi-tech Agriculture Joint Stock Company opened a representative office in Hamburg, Germany in June 2021, so that European Union customers can easily access the company's products. As a result, after only two months of opening the office, the number of customers in Europe buying the company's products has risen significantly.
With experiences in success in exports to the EU, a representative of KK Food Company also said the EU consumers prefer fast products that can be used immediately. Therefore, processed products will be more appreciated. In addition, thick-skinned fruits such as coconuts and pomelos, which are bulky when exported as fresh fruit, will cost a lot, making prices high and difficult to compete. Therefore, processed products such as canned coconut water will be cheaper and easier.
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Ms. Vo Thi Ngoc Diep, commercial counselor at the Embassy of the S.R. of Viet Nam to the Kingdom of the Netherlands, also noted businesses should understand consumers’ tastes in each country. For example, Dutch people prefer fruits with a clear taste and color. Fruits with a neutral taste like dragon fruit will be less popular, while to deliver to consumers, a dragon fruit is priced about 4.5 EUR. Vo Thi Ngoc Diep also recommended that businesses should choose processed products to export to the EU because they have a longer shelf life and are more competitive.
By Nguyen Hien/ Huyen Trang