Like the southern region, the northern region of Vietnam has many species of pomelos. One of its most famous is the Phuc Trach pomelo from Ha Tinh province.
This kind of big grapefruit is cultivated in Phuc Trach, Huong Trach, Huong Do and Loc Yen communes of Huong Khe district. The tree is said to have appeared in Phuc Trach commune about 200 years ago. At the moment, about 1,600 hectares in the district are devoted to growing this tree.
The Phuc Trach pomelo (Citrus grandis Osbeck) is a perennial. Beginning in its sixth year of growth, the tree produces about 90-120 fruits in a season. It yields the most at the age of 11-15, but the older a tree is, the tastier its fruit is. The tree produces fruit from the seventh to the ninth lunar months of each year.
Phuc Trach pomelos have produced round fruit with yellow-green peels which weigh about 1-1.5 kilograms. Its flesh is pink. The flesh contains a lot of juice and is crispy. It is sweet and slightly pungent but not sour nor bitter. However, the fruit is claimed to be not as good if the tree is grown elsewhere.
Because of its fame, the Phuc Trach pomelo has become the object of a project for preserving and developing its genes. The Vietnam Friendship Association, non-governmental organisations in France, in coordination with the district and commune governments, established a project for preserving and developing the Phuc Trach pomelo breed in mid-2004. The association had Can Tho University’s agriculture experts study Huong Khe’s natural conditions for more than two months, and then sent officials from the district, communes, seedling centres and good farmers to the university to learn about growing the grapefruit.
In early 2005, the association selected about 100 households in the four communes that each had 50-100 trees to join the project. In this project, the association not only provided farmers with fertilisers, pesticides and techniques but also sold all their products through its own Dong Nam Production, Trading and Services Co. Ltd.
As well, Huong Khe Farmers Association was granted a trademark certificate for the Phuc Trach pomelo in September 2004 by the Vietnam Office of Intellectual Property rights.
Pomelos with the Buoi Phuc Trach trademark were officially introduced for the first time by Dong Nam Co. at a pomelo festival held in Ho Chi Minh City from September 15-17, 2005. At this event, hundreds of fruits were sold to guests and customers.