On October 2nd 2019 in Ho Chi Minh City, Plant Protection Dept (PPD) under Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) with the support of GIZ Regional Project called Support of Regional Economic Cooperation in Asia (GIZ-SRECA’s Vietnam) organized an Awareness Raising Workshop for Traders on China and ASEAN Import Requirements on Fresh Fruit, focusing on Vietnamese major exports.

Among 63 participants (30 males and 33 females) to the Event, most were fresh fruit exporters and producers based in Ho Chi Minh City and Southern Provinces that are considered as the fresh fruit exporting hub of the country while the speakers were experts and senior officers from the different units under PPD, including International Cooperation and Communication Dept, Post-Entry Plant Quarantine Centre 2 and Southern Pesticide Control and Testing Centre.

Both China and ASEAN countries requires fresh fruit to have market access before they could be imported into these markets. Therefore, technical market access process should be conducted first. For China in particular, the protocol signing will grant the permit for official export of fresh fruit from Vietnam to the Chinese market. So far, Vietnam could export officially only 9 fresh fruit products to China.

Among ASEAN members, Thailand is the market applying rather high requirements on the fresh fruit imported from Vietnam, according to their Plant Quarantine Act B.E. 2507 and its updated and revised version as Plant Quarantine Act (No.2) B.E. 2542. Their regulated articles are divided into 3 lists: prohibited, restricted and unprohibited.

Meanwhile, China has its own requirements on fresh fruit imports like information of traceability: the name of product, place of production and place of packaging or marking/ coding must be written in Chinese or English on the package. Moreover, all the producers of fresh fruits exports to China must register for the information coding system conducted by PPD and verified by the Chinese competent authority.

After introducing the plant quarantine requirement of China and ASEAN countries, speakers also introduced web links and QR codes for information sources that traders may need. In addition, participants were guided with specific steps for the registration for information coding system. From April 2019, at the Protocol signing for the market access of Vietnam mangosteen, China requires Vietnamese orchards must register for the application of GAPs and Integrated Pest Management (IPM), accordingly, the orchards must have logbooks and pest control measures.

MRLs are also the concern of many importing markets including China and ASEAN. Therefore, various examples are presented to traders/ producers on how to reduce the chemical/ pesticide residues on fresh fruit products in each stage from the planting to harvesting.

Through the WS, traders and producers could fully understand the import requirements of these important importing markets in the region, with the view to comply with the rules in their production, processing, storage and transportation, so that their consignments could go through the checkpoints smoothly, by that way, save much time and cost for traders.