Vietnam’s domestic pepper price has reached its highest rate ever at VND120,000 (US$5.7) a kilogram, Vietnam Pepper Association (VPA) announced at its annual conference in Ho Chi Minh City yesterday.
The pepper price has increased by nearly VND50,000/kg, or 66 percent, compared with the beginning of the crop (mid-December last year).
The price hike is partly due to the undersupply on the world market. At present, the export price of black pepper is US$4,456/ton, a year-on-year increase of over US$1,600, while white pepper has risen stronger (by more than US$3,000/ton) to approximately US$7,000/ton.
Unlike other agricultural sectors, farmers stock their pepper at home to sell for a high price.
“Only in the pepper sector can farmers determine the selling price for their products while people in other sectors are forced to sell at certain prices,” said Do Ha Nam, chairman of the VPA.
Nam said pepper growers surf the Internet every day to see the world price before fixing the selling price for dealers and companies. They sell the pepper if the world price goes up and stock the product if its price drops.
A representative of an Indian pepper exporter in Vietnam said in previous years people begged buyers to buy pepper but it is on the contrary now when the buyers begged sellers to sell to them.
According to the VPA, Vietnam’s pepper output for this year reaches 100,000-110,000 tons. The country exported 25,000 tons of pepper in the first quarter, earning US$123 million, a growth of nearly 45 percent year on year.
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