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‘Contract farming will boost mango processing capacity’

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Ministry of Commerce undersecretary of state Seang Thai (centre right) paid a working visit to inspect Long Wo Fruit Industry Co Ltd’s mango jam factory in Kandal province’s Ang Snuol district last Friday. MINISTRY OF COMMERCE

‘Contract farming will boost mango processing capacity’

The Ministry of Commerce urged China-owned Long Wo Fruit Industry Co Ltd to carry out contract farming with more farmers’ associations or farmers directly to ensure its processing capacity and supply chain can increase exports of a processed-mango.

During a working visit to inspect the company’s mango jam factory in Kandal province’s Ang Snuol district last Friday, Ministry of Commerce undersecretary of state Seang Thai said the private sector and the state needed to join hands to tackle some challenges in promoting investment in mango processing.

“To ensure the investment goes smoothly, the company would need to carry out contract farming with the farming community or association to expand the capacity and build a supply chain,” he said.

Long Wo’s president, Lu Song, said that along with growing and reviewing its ability to expand further to Kampong Cham, his factory has been facing challenges such as a lack of raw materials.

There is also the problem of buying mangoes from farmers and a lack of stakeholder coordination, he said.

He said that contract farming is one of the issues prioritised by his company as it directly affects his factory’s sustainability and export potential. However, he did not disclose the production capacity or amount of current exports.

For now, the company owns two mango jam and fruit processing factories in Kampong Speu and Kandal provinces.

Cambodia’s fresh mangoes have been approved by South Korean authorities to be exported into that country, while exports to the Chinese market may happen by the end of next year.

Officials from the General Administration of Customs of the People’s Republic of China (GACC) arrived to assess the quality of Cambodian mangoes in late November.

Ngin Chhay, the director-general of the General Department of Agriculture at the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, called for more investment in mango cultivation, packaging, and disinfection of the fruits.

He estimated that by 2023, the Kingdom will export 600,000 tonnes of mangoes a year.

In 2018, Cambodia exported more than 50,000 tonnes of processed mango products to Thailand, Vietnam, Hong Kong, France and Russia.

There are more than 100,000ha of mango cultivation in Cambodia, and the province that produces the most and best quality is Kampong Speu.

It is followed by Battambang, Kampot and Banteay Meanchey provinces, where most orchards cultivate turmeric mango, which can be harvested twice a year and yields about four million tonnes a year.

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