At the Carrefour Tongre supermarket near the European Union (EU) headquarters in Brussels, Thanh Ha lychee is being sold beside other tropical fruit such as mangoes, cherries, peaches, and plums.
This is not the first time this supermarket has imported fresh lychee, usually from Madagascar, South Africa and Australia in November and December, but this is the first time Vietnamese lychee has hit shelves at this supermarket in summer.
“When I look at photos of Vietnamese lychee from Vinamex, I immediately liked it because the fruit is round and even. When I tried it, it was even better. I have never eaten such a delicious fruit and I decided to import and sell it so that the Belgian people can know this wonderful fruit from Vietnam,” said Weiss, in charge of the Carrefour Tongre supermarket.
Weiss noted he was very impressed by Vietnamese lychee and wanted to widely promote this special fruit to Belgian consumers. He believes that many local consumers will like this fruit when they enjoy its taste for the first time.
Weiss decided to import 100kg of lychee to distribute to the five Carrefour supermarkets he is in charge of, the fruit being sold at EUR25 per kg, quite a high price as compared to other fruit. He added that Vietnam should improve its post-harvest technology to keep lychee fresh longer.
Director of Vinamex, Minh Lien, said her company will ship the next batch of lychee to Belgium and then thereafter the Hung Yen longan. She expressed her belief that the Hung Yen longan will also win over consumers in the country.
The implementation of the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement has paved the way for Vietnamese agricultural products to further enter Europe. Recently, a Vietnamese firm in coordination with a company in the Czech Republic imported one tonne of Luc Ngan lychee to distribute to 10 markets in the EU, among others.