According to the municipal Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, orchid was grown in the city on around 360 hectares, mostly in Hoc Mon, Cu Chi and Binh Chanh districts, and around VND615 billion worth of orchid plants and branches were supplied, with a focus on varieties such as mokara and dendrobium.
Dang Le Thi Thanh Huyen, director of Huyen Thoai Orchid Cooperative, said because of its favourable climate and application of modern technologies HCM City has better orchid output and quality than other places.
According to Vuon Mo Co Ltd, shops in many provinces sell orchid stems of poor quality as they have to rely on middlemen since they cannot regularly travel the long distance to HCM City.
Tran Truong Son of the HCM City Farmers Association said orchid farmers in the city face a similar problem and also have to rely on traders.
Tran Tan Quy, deputy director of the department, said it had been working with Can Tho city and south-western provinces to expand the orchid market and organising conferences and networking events to link farmers and cooperatives with distributors to form long-term partnerships.
The city also consulted farmers, distributors and other relevant parties to draft favourable policies.
The department is planning to organise a flower festival to promote orchids, which Le Thanh Lien, deputy chairman of the city People’s Committee, said would help the city’s plan to shift from rice to more profitable crops.
Son said small farmers should work together to ensure stable supply and prices, and relevant departments should organise networking events to help farmers find more partners.
Pham Thiet Hoa, director of the Investment and Trade Promotion Centre, said the centre had helped connect more than 60 businesses with farmers and cooperatives and held annual exhibitions to connect farmers directly with customers so that they did not have to rely on intermediaries.
Farmers had also improved their techniques and orchid quality over the years, he said.
The city plans to have around 600 hectares under orchids by 2030.