While many South-East Asian countries are currently banned from exporting vegetables to the EU, Cambodia has the opportunity to make the most of this time. This is the strategy outlined by the country’s Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries senior official Ngin Chhay, speaking to a press conference last Wednesday. Cambodia are in an advantageous position as Vietnam and Thailand currently have “red cards” issued against them by the EU which temporarily block their vegetable exports to the region.
Cambodia also received a “yellow card” six years ago as a warning that its vegetables did not comply with the EU’s sanitation and phytosanitary standards. But this “yellow card” has now been rescinded. “It took me six years to work out a fix to the ‘yellow card’ issue and it was pulled out two months ago. I would like to see a thumbs-up from foreign markets for our products now that we are famous and our vegetables are known to be all-organic and produced naturally,” said Chhay.
Meanwhile, the ministry continues to promote vegetable farming in line with Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) guidelines. It also encourages farmers to build net houses and illustrates proper fertiliser use.