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The effectiveness of the model of planting clean fruits associated with the development of orchard eco-tourism Update: 13-06-2019
Three years ago, Ms. Do Thi Minh, who settled in hamlet 7 in Binh Son commune in Long Thanh district suddenly quit her accountant job with a dream salary for many people to change to work on a clean fruit-growing model associated with the development of orchard eco-tourism. During these summer months, every weekend her orchard welcomes hundreds of arrivals of tourists, who come to enjoy fruit “specialties”.


Ms. Thom is introducing her clean durian products of her orchard.

 

Thom said, her family’s orchard used to mainly sell their products to traders so they tended to be forced to sell their products at lower prices and this method brought back poor economic efficiency. In particular, before their products managed to go into customers’ hands they had to go through various channels.

 

“The idea of ​​planting fruit trees in combination with the development of orchard eco-tourism has been cherished for a long time as I have a great passion for gardening. Also, the current demand for eco-tourism in orchards during summer months is constantly growing. My orchard is really large with various kinds of fruits and this is really suitable for developing eco-tourism and when I get into tourism business I can earn more and sell my fruit products as well”, said Thom.

 

On an area of ​​2.5 hectares left by her family, she focuses on planting 3 types of fruit trees: durian, rambutan and mangosteen. Particularly, durian-growing area with about 300 trees accounts for more than a half and most of planted durians are Ri6 type.

 

“Initially, I participated in the VietGAP project of the People’s Committee of Long Thanh district and then I continued to participate in the VietGAP project of growing mangosteens. Thanks to acquired cultivation techniques and how to take care of trees towards cleanliness and safety my products can give customers a peace of mind in terms of quality and build customers’ trust in orchard products. Therefore, I don’t have to worry about the output”, Thom said.

 

Although she has just worked on the model of orchard eco-tourism for 3 years, thanks to a proper design of her orchard and a supply of clean and safe fruit products, on the occasion of summer every year a lot of tourists from Saigon, Bien Hoa, Vung Tau, and so on paid a visit to her orchard even when fruits have not ripened yet.

 

“The fruit tree model associated with orchard eco-tourism is mainly offered during 2 to 3 summer months as fruits are in their ripening season. Last year, I sold tickets worth VND30,000 each through the schedule of visiting the  orchard, taking pictures and eating rambutans for free. Also, visitors can order local specialties. However, this year due to high prices of various fruits, it is likely to have to increase ticket prices,” added Thom.

 


Currently, orchards are really a tourist attraction through the model of orchard eco-tourism

 

According to Thom, at the peak time of the fruit season, every day her orchard receives about 20-30 visitors, especially on Saturdays and Sundays that it can welcome more than 100 visitors every day.

 

From the reality of offering the model of orchard eco-tourism, Thom also got important experience for her success. She said, to apply clean agriculture associated with tourism development, the most important thing is to build up a brand. To implement orchard eco-tourism, orchard owners must accept a few years of breakeven or even loss but they will have conditions to build and develop their brands in return.

 

Ms Thom not only offers orchard eco-tourism services but is also the director of Bau Tre safe agriculture cooperative, with 10 members. The cooperative’s safe agricultural products are present at all supermarkets and Dau Giay wholesale market. These are the channels to promote and consume local fruit products.

According to Mr. Tran Quoc Tuan, Chairman of the People's Committee of Binh Son commune, implementing the policy of assisting people to raise their per capita income, Binh Son commune has helped farmers to implement 2 Viet GAP production models on durian and mangosteen trees. This is a typical model of safe and economically efficient agricultural production in the commune.

 

“In the past, as these new production models have not been implemented, the commune’s average income was only about VND100 to VND150 million per ha per year. After the implementation of these models, people have enjoyed great benefits from the project as well as been able to follow a production model towards cleanliness and safety and has had more conditions to attract more tourists and visitors who come to buy fruit at the orchard. As a result, the income of these orchards can also be increased 2 to 3 times as much as before,” said the Chairman of Binh Son People’s Committee Tran Quoc Tuan.

 

Duy Minh (Thanh Canh)

 

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