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News Article

Getting spices to market

Project aims to improve market access for smallholder peppercorn farmers in Vietnam

The last twenty years have seen a 9-fold increase in land turned to peppercorn production in Vietnam, from 15,000 ha in 2001 to 140,000 ha in 2019, making Vietnam the largest peppercorn-producing country, followed closely by India and Indonesia.

Vietnam is also a major coffee-growing country, and the move to peppercorn production was due in part to a decrease in world coffee prices and an increase in the global demand for spices, particularly from food processing companies.

With >40% of the world’s share of exports, the greatest portion going to the USA, Vietnam tops the chart of peppercorn exporters. Despite this, smallholders have continued to have difficulties accessing the international market.

An STDF (Standards and Trade Development Facility) project Safer spices: food safety and market access for peppercorn aims to increase financial returns and improve productivity, safety and market access for smallholders by improving compliance with international food safety requirements and providing consistent supplies of high-quality safe produce.

Analysis of SPS issues has suggested the main food safety and hygiene-related problems are a result of poor farm-level decisions or practices during production, harvesting, drying and initial storage.

The project is expected to develop a regional Code of Practice for adoption by farm-level pepper producers, collectors and input providers in peppercorn supply chains in Vietnam and the emerging pepper-producing countries Cambodia and Laos, and develop and disseminate knowledge resources and practices amongst all participants.

See the CABI blog Implementing market access for peppercorn farmers in South East Asia for more information on smallholder peppercorn value chains and CABI’s role in the STDF project.

Article details

  • Contact Details
  • Alexis Rendell-Dunn
  • Date
  • 11 May 2021
  • Subject(s)
  • Medicinal & essential oil plants