“The total pepper exported this year may reach 86,000 tonnes, worth nearly US$619 million. These figures would be down by 30 per cent in volume and 16 per cent in value,” the ministry said.
Head of the administrative office under the Vietnam Pepper Association, Tran Duc Tung said bad weather has strongly affected crops, and many older plants have died.
Since 2001, Vietnam has been the largest pepper producer and exporter in the world.
The ministry reported that in 2011, the country exported 125,000 tonnes of pepper, valued at US$736 million. Although the year-on-year volume increased by only 7.2 per cent, the value surged by 74.6 per cent.
Demand for pepper has risen year-on-year in most markets.
Demand from Spain increased the most, at 270 per cent, earning the country’s pepper industry US$25.6 million in 2011.
Spain was followed by Singapore with growth of 231.4 per cent, worth more than US$21 million. Other markets experiencing significant growth were Egypt at 212 per cent, the US at 158 per cent and India at 101 per cent.
Last year, the price of pepper climbed sharply in both the domestic and export markets, thanks to high demand and low supply.
The price of black pepper soared to a record high of VND161 million (US$7,600) per tonne in September 2011, up by 116 per cent against the same period in 2010. The price of white pepper also soared by 99 per cent reaching VND197.5 million (US$9,300) per tonne.
On average, the price of pepper last year was roughly US$5,870 per tonne, up by 66.3 per cent over 2010.
However, since the beginning of this year the price has fallen by US$800 per tonne.
“The domestic price is falling in line with the will market,” the ministry said.
The ministry estimated that the price would continue to decline due to low demand. (VNA) nt