Workshop on Vietnam’s Specialty Coffee Development (14/03/2019, 15:21)

The seminar on Vietnam’s specialty coffee development was held in Buon Ma Thuot City (Dak Lak) on the afternoon of March 10th with the participation of representatives of Ministry of Agriculture & Rural Development, Vietnam Cocoa - Coffee Association, international organizations and domestic coffee producing, processing and trading businesses.

The workshop is co-chaired by Deputy Minister of Agriculture & Rural Development Le Quoc Doanh, Chairman of Vietnam Coffee Association Luong Van Tu, Vice Chairman of the Provincial People's Committee Y Giang Gry Nie Knong.

At the workshop, coffee specialists from Japan, Indonesia and Malaysia presented the real situation and experience in specialty coffee development; specialty coffee market and impacts of preliminary methods on specialty coffee industry and its price. Ministry of Agriculture & Rural Development, Vietnam Cocoa - Coffee Association and domestic institutes of science and technology and businesses also discussed the solutions to improve the value of Vietnamese coffee, methods of specialty coffee bean production, and several suggestions on Vietnamese specialty coffee development.

Statistics of the Department of Crop Production (Ministry of Agriculture & Rural Development) showed that Vietnam has 664,000 hectares of coffee with the total productivity of 1.5 million tonnes per year. Coffee is mainly grown in 5 provinces of the Central Highlands region (Dak Lak, Lam Dong, Dak Nong, Gia Lai, Kon Tum) with the area of 577,800 hectares (accounting for 89,6%).

Vietnam has a large area of Robusta coffee (accounting for 93%) and the remaining is Arabica coffee. With the average productivity of 2.3 tonnes coffee per hectare, it is higher than the average productivity of coffee in the world. Despite getting high profit, many coffee growers have not followed technical process, overused fertilizers, pesticides and wasted water resources.

Vietnamese coffee is exported to 80 countries and territories around the world worth 3 billion USD of export turnover, accounting for 14% of world market share and 10.4% of exported coffee value (ranking 2nd in the world after Brazil). Although Vietnamese coffee reached high export turnover in the agricultural products group, 90% of Vietnamese coffee is still exported in raw form (coffee beans), and its growth remained the average rate (6.57% each year) in the period of 2013-2017 due to the fluctuations in the international coffee market.

With the aim of improving the competitiveness and the value of Vietnamese coffee, Central agencies, localities, enterprises and people have taken some solutions such as improvement on the efficiency, reduction in production cost; improvement in collection, preservation and processing; market development. However, those solutions have not brought high results. Therefore, the specialty coffee development is considered as a new direction, a significant breakthrough in quality to enhance the value of Vietnamese coffee.

Concluding the workshop, Deputy Minister of Agriculture & Rural Development Le Quoc Doanh agreed that the development of specialty coffee will be an opportunity to improve coffee value. However, the production of specialty coffee must consider many factors, especially the suitability of climate, soil, and strict requirements on production, preliminary processing and processing.Therefore, the development of specialty coffee must follow the planning. Ministry of Agriculture & Rural Development will develop a specific program to develop specialty coffee in the coming time.

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