Concerns have been raised after a story of Chinese merchants buying a large amount of Dong Tao big-drumstick chicken’s eggs and chicks at steep prices was spread in the media.
Distinctive for its rough, gigantic drumsticks, Dong Tao chicken in the northern province of Hung Yen features heavy figures, thick skin and red meat. The delicacy has long been popular among gourmet groups across the country and recently become a collective trademark.
Some say the massive transaction is for breeding purposes that could harm the trademark’s competitiveness while others have linked it with damaging speculations in the past.
In Dong Tao commune, Khoai Chau district, there is considerable anxiety among more than 1,500 households who have cared for the distinguishable farm bird for years, as they consider the whole story to be a detrimental rumour.
Vu Dinh Trieu, a local farmer, declared there were Chinese men visiting and learning about the chicken but there was no such massive purchase.
Sharing Trieu’s opinion, Le Quang Thang, head of an association for Dong Tao chicken farming and trade, informed that in recent years, tourists from Japan, Thailand, Laos, Belgium and China have toured the locality and purchased chicken and eggs with at a limited amount.
In fact, it often takes months after pre-orders to deliver the local products, which are only crossbred for commercial purposes.
According to Nguyen Van Phu, Vice Director of Hung Yen’s Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, his agency learned through working sessions with local authorities that in the past three months, prices have maintained normal levels and the chickens have expanded through good genetic preservation programmes.
Egg prices are between VND50,000 and VND80,000 (US$2.2-3.5) each, while the chick costs range from VND250,000 – VND300,000 (US$11-13.3).