“Black gold” from Vietnam is very popular in China and is imported by many countries around the world.

This “black gold” is pepper. In 2023, Vietnam exported pepper to more than 100 countries and territories around the world. Leading export markets are China, the USA, India, etc. Among these markets, China is a major importer.

According to China Customs, this country’s pepper import in 2023 reached about 9.18 thousand tons, with a turnover of 39.75 million USD, up 4.5% in volume and down 6.1% in value compared to 2022. China’s annual import demand is about 65,000 – 70,000 tons.

In terms of supply structure, in 2023, China imported pepper from 25 countries and territories. Indonesia is the largest supplier with an output of more than 4,000 tons, worth 17.63 million USD, down 11.5% in volume and 19.5% in value compared to 2022. Vietnam now is the second-largest supplier. Specifically, in 2023, Vietnam’s total pepper export to China reached about 3.36 thousand tons, worth 13.23 million USD, up 18% in volume and 01% in value compared to 2022.

Vietnam is the second-largest pepper supplier to China.

According to the Import and Export Department, in 2024, it is forecast that China’s import demand will increase compared to last year. This is an opportunity for exporters around the world because pepper is mainly used as a spice in the food industry. Moreover, this is a popular item among many Chinese people.

The growing area of pepper in Vietnam reached 115,000 ha in 2023 which was down by 5,000 ha compared to 2022. Currently, there are nearly 20 provinces with a growing area of 100 ha. In particular, the two regions with the fastest-growing pepper area are the Southeast and the Central Highlands. The pepper harvest in 2024 has started in some districts of Dak Nong province, but not much.


Vietnam is the leading pepper producer in the world, contributing about 40% of global supply. However, pepper production in 2024 is forecast to continue to decrease to 180,000 – 200,000 tons. Recent heavy rains in the Central Highlands and Southern provinces have caused many difficulties for pepper growers.

In addition to the long-term challenges from 2023 on tariffs or residues, the pepper industry has to face many difficulties this year. This is the year with the lowest inventory from the previous year in the past five years. With low inventories, production and import are forecast to decrease (because other countries are also limited in excess supply), making Vietnam’s pepper exports in 2024 likely to reach a low level.

However, according to the International Pepper Community (IPC), global pepper production in 2024 will decrease by 1.1%, equivalent to a decrease of 6,000 tons. The reason is adverse weather caused by the El Nino affecting pepper yield and harvest. Besides, pepper prices globally tend to increase in the first quarter of 2024 as production continues to decrease in the main producing countries. This will impact Vietnam’s export prices./.