Citrus cultivation helps Hoa Binh province reduce poverty

Ngoc Anh
Chia sẻ
(VOVWORLD) - Van Son commune, 20 km northwest of the center of Tan Lac district, Hoa Binh province, is famous for growing citrus trees. By restructuring crops from potatoes, corn, and cassava to pomelos, oranges, and tangerines, local farmers have become better-off.
Citrus cultivation helps Hoa Binh province reduce poverty - ảnh 1A farmer of Van Son hamlet visits his tangerine garden. (Photo: Ngoc Anh)

Van Son commune’s 17 hamlets are home to 5,600 people, 98% of them members of Vietnam’s Muong ethnic minority. The Van Son villagers are once again growing the Nam Son variety of tangerine, which was previously grown in Nam Son commune during the early 1900s. Nam Son is now part of Van Son commune.

Nam Son tangerines are famous for their thin skin, thick, succulent segments, and distinctive fragrance. In 2018, the variety was granted the official collective trademark "Nam Son Tangerine".

Local farmers also grow Canh oranges, yellow-heart oranges, and Tan Lac red-flesh grapefruits, a high-yield variety. When ripe, the grapefruit segments are reddish pink, juicy, and sweet. The variety was granted the official collective trademark "Tan Lac Red Grapefruit" in 2017.

Le Chi Huyen, Deputy Chairman of the People's Committee of Tan Lac district, said that Tan Lac district’s grapefruits and tangerines have built successful brands and positions in the market.

“We registered a product trademark for Tan Lac Red Grapefruit, which has been recognized as an OCOP product. These grapefruits have been exported to the UK. Nam Son tangerines have been recognized as a 3-star OCOP product of Hoa Binh province,” said Huyen.

Citrus cultivation helps Hoa Binh province reduce poverty - ảnh 2Van Son villagers packaging tangerines for traders (Photo: Ngoc Anh)

Thanks to suitable soil and climate, tangerines and Canh oranges grow well and produce high yields. During the harvest season in November and December, orange and tangerine trees are laden with branches, coloring the hillsides in Van Son commune bright yellow.

According to Ha Van Ha, Deputy Chairman of Van Son communal People's Committee, Nam Son tangerine trees are the key to local economic growth.

“We have restructured from cassava, corn, and potatoes, and low-value trees to tangerine trees. The commune has more than 500 hectares of tangerines. In the future, we’ll grow citrus trees in all 17 hamlets. Traders pay 1.6 USD a kilo for tangerines,” said Ha.

He added Van Son recently coordinated with Tan Lac district to organize an investment promotion conference to find sales outlets for local agricultural products. Many traders now come to our farms to buy products.

Thanks to switching from low-value crops to oranges and tangerines, many families in Van Son commune have escaped poverty and enjoy a stabler life.

Ha Van Chanh, a resident of Xom hamlet, said, “After growing Canh oranges proved successful, villagers switched to growing orange trees. Living conditions have improved, and the economy is stable. My family grows 2,000 orange trees, and each year’s single harvest earns us 4,100 USD, enough to make ends meet.”

Citrus cultivation helps Hoa Binh province reduce poverty - ảnh 3Dinh Thi Quyet, a resident of Xom hamlet in Van Son commune  (Photo: Ngoc Anh)

Local growers have contracted with businesses to sell their produce at stable prices. Dinh Thi Quyet of Xom hamlet said her family has 1,000 orange and tangerine trees and harvest 20 tons per crop.

Quyet told VOV, “Traders come to my farm to buy. My family has 6 people, and an average crop earns us 8,200 USD per person. Thanks to growing oranges and tangerines, we’ve been able to build a house and buy motorbikes and lawn mowers. We plan to expand our cultivation area to increase our income.”

She noted the local authorities have opened training courses for local farmers, and the communal administration has helped local families borrow business capital. Getting a loan is convenient and fast.

In recent years, life in Van Son commune has improved significantly. The commune's grapefruits, oranges, and tangerines are sold throughout northern Vietnam.