Clean food for Tet feasts in HCMC

Year of the Dog is the first year when HCMC residents can buy many types of fresh food with traceable origin. Producers have seen through the awareness of making clean food and the culture of consuming safe food has taken shape in the community.

 Hi-tech musk melon farming in HCMC (Photo: SGGP)

Hi-tech musk melon farming in HCMC (Photo: SGGP)

On May 16, 2013 Saigon Union of Trading Co-operatives (Saigon Co.op) signed contracts with 16 establishments and cooperatives to produce vegetables and fruits meeting VietGap quality standards to provide Co.opMart supermarkets in long term.
In return, the supermarket arranged an area to showcase VietGap products, making it easy for consumers to identify and make their choices.
After a year of pilot implementation, VietGap product purchasing power at Co.opMart supermarkets increased 100 percent. That requires the union to continue expanding the quality standard practice to other products such as chicken eggs, meat and processed food.
A slew of other supermarkets such as BigC, Vinmart, Metro and Citimart started transferring their business direction to VietGap products, opening a new direction for the agricultural industry in HCMC and other provinces and cities with material zones supplying city supermarket chains.
The HCMC Department of Industry and Trade officially announced the system of 246 food selling spots meeting food safety and quality standards such as VietGap, GlobalGap and HACCP on December 7, 2015. They sell products including vegetables, fruits, cattle meat, poultry and eggs. Selling spots have neared 400 with the attendance of 50 production businesses so far.
Pork origin tracking and management project was officially launched on December 16, 2016. The number of pigs with traceable origin from farms to slaughter houses and wholesale markets reaches 7,500-8,000 a day now. One hundred percent of pork output sold in modern distribution system are traceable everyday and that has set consumers’ mind at rest.
The city also implemented an origin tracking project to poultry and egg on October 3, 2017 at all distribution systems with over 1,749 selling spots registering to attend the project.
Behind the path of building and developing clean food chains was the attempt by the city. Former deputy chairwoman of HCMC People’s Committee Nguyen Thi Hong and agencies conducted lot of field surveys, grasped real situation and solved difficulties for businesses and cooperatives to produce safe products.
Lot of seminars were hosted on the spot to estimate results, share experiences and expand farming models under VietGap standards in HCMC and provinces having advantages in good sources such as Lam Dong, Dong Nai, Binh Duong, Dong Thap, Tien Giang and Long An.
Sai Gon Giai Phong reporters used to witness the image of deputy director of HCMC Department of Industry and Trade Nguyen Ngoc Hoa surrounded by traders and fierce confrontations between traders and authorized agencies late at night in Binh Dien wholesale market when the city launched the pork origin tracking project.
Mr. Hoa and coworkers have had tens of working sessions with provincial agencies and provided training on the project at local farms.
Expanding the movement of clean food production and consumption needs guidance and assistances for businesses to speed up propaganda. That aims to help consumers understand the difference in specifications and quality between safe food and other products in the market.
Food safety issue will be solved with strong participation by the entire society. Managers, producers, distributors and consumers must be together on safe food production and consumption.

By THUY HAI – Translated by Hai Mien

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