Fruit, vegetable exports predicted to top US$5.5 billion

Fruit and vegetable exports have hit a new record and forecast to bring home over US$.5 billion in 2023.
Durian is predicted to hit the export target of US$1.5 billion this October. (Photo: SGGP)
Durian is predicted to hit the export target of US$1.5 billion this October. (Photo: SGGP)

Vietnam posted US$4.2 billion in fruit and vegetable exports during the first nine months, surging nearly 72 percent year on year and breaking the record of 3.81 billion in 2018, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

Meanwhile, the Vietnam Vegetable and Fruit Association (VINAFRUIT) estimated nine-month imports at about US$1.46 billion, falling 0.1 percent.

The biggest importers of Vietnam's fruits and vegetables are China, the US, the Republic of Korea (RoK), Japan, and the Netherlands. Among them, only shipments to the US dropped slightly but rose sharply in the others.

Exports to China surpassed US$2.26 billion, jumping 134 percent from a year earlier. This market was followed by the Netherlands (up 50 percent), the RoK (18 percent), and Japan (6 percent). China also topped foreign buyers of Vietnamese fruits and vegetables, accounting for almost 64 percent, followed by the US, the RoK, Japan, and the Netherlands, statistics show.

Notably, durian continued to enjoy strong export growth. It generated more than US$1.28 billion in export value during January - August, shooting up 700 percent from the same period last year.

The surge was attributable to the export via the official channel to China, which imported nearly US$1.15 billion of durian, mainly fresh one, during the period. Thanks to that, this fruit is predicted to hit the target of US$.5 billion this October.

In addition, other fruits also posted good growth in foreign earnings such as jackfruit, mango, lychee, watermelon, pomelo, and longan.

A slight decrease was seen in dragon fruit exports, to nearly US$450 million, due to a plunge in the shipments to China and the US.

However, VINAFRUIT is looking forwards to a rebound in dragon fruit revenue since China usually has a high demand for this fruit by the year’s end.

With the US’s recent licensing of Vietnamese coconut and the negotiation on the official export of coconut to China, this fruit is also hoped to quickly become a billion-USD commodity in the coming time.

All those factors are expected to help further raise fruit and vegetable exports in the time ahead.

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