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Imported ‘dirty meat’ scandals bring opportunities to domestic producers   2009-10-30 - TBKTSG

Vietnam’s ongoing “dirty meat” saga has caused shocks for consumers, but it’s turning out to be good news for domestic farmers and processors.


Imported ‘dirty meat’ scandals bring opportunities to domestic producers

According to the Veterinary Agency, the meat import volume has been increasing continuously in the last three years from 44,178 tonnes in 2007 to 119,130 tonnes in 2008, while imports were 57,206 tonnes in the first half of 2009.


“Dirty meat” has hit the headlines on a number of occasions. Vinafood imported dirty meat, while AC Food imported unsafe milk. Most recently, on September 30, 72 tonnes of frozen chicken legs imported by a HCM City-based from Poland were discovered.


While waiting for government agencies to take measures to protect consumers, Vietnamese consumers are taking actions to protect themselves. Increasingly they are turning to domestic products instead of imports.


Domestic producers, Vissan, CP, Duc Viet and Huynh Gia Huynh De, taking full advantage of the occasion, have boosted sales on the domestic market.

A survey conducted by the Agriculture Information Centre (Agroinfo) under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, 12.9 percent of polled people in Hanoi said they use Vissan’s meat, while the figure is 74.7 percent in HCM City.

The survey showed that Vietnamese enterprises have paid more attention to consumers’ tastes and that Vietnamese consumers are becoming smarter using only safe suppliers and trusted brand names.


Distributors have also realised the attractiveness of fresh food markets. Metro Cash & Carry, Big C, HaproMart, Saigon Co.op and Fivimart have signed contracts with producers to boost sale of domestic products. Meanwhile, domestic producers, having realised the higher demand, have made heavier investment in production in order to raise output.


In June 2009, Huynh Gian Huynh De put into operation the poultry meat processing factory in Dong Thap province, which will operate together with two factories in Tay Ninh and HCM City.


In August 2009, Vissan got the license for the animal and poultry meat processing factory system in Long An province which has the total investment capital of 700 billion dong.


According to Agroinfo, Vietnamese families are tending to consume more fresh food. Some 42.7 percent of families said they eat pork every day, while the ratio is 8.6 percent for beef and 6.5 percent for poultry meat. Meanwhile, 52.4 percent of families say they eat pork several times a week, and the figures are 55.4 and 53 percent, respectively, for beef and poultry.


Eighty percent families said they purchase fresh meat at traditional markets, while only 20 percent purchase from supermarkets.

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