On average, 1 ha of Galangal root growing area can bring about 40 tonnes of Galangal root per year. The traders often come and purchase at a price ranging from 5,000 – 10,000 VND/kg.

Mr. Ba Lac takes care of the Galangal root to supply to farmers who want to grow. (Photo: Internet)

Binh Loi (Binh Chanh district, Ho Chi Minh City) is a commune with many rivers and canals, so the soil is heavily contaminated with alum. It is very difficult for farmers to plant trees and raise animals. After many years of attachment to sugarcane, etc. but ineffective, farmers sưitched to other crops with higher economic efficiency, including Galangal root.

Mr. Nguyen Van Tan’s family (also known as Ba Lac, in Hamlet 2) is the pioneer of Galangal root growing in Binh Loi commune for more than ten years. With a growing area of more than 2.2 ha, previously, he just specialized in growing Yellow Apricot trees sold to gardeners. At that time, many people in the commune also flocked to grow Yellow Apricot trees making the price went down. Mr. Ba Lac then switched to growing turmeric.

However, turmeric shares” the same fate” as the Yellow Apricot tree because there is a consumption market. Incidentally, he discovered among the varieties of turmeric, some strange tubers were sprouting green. After asking, Mr. Ba Lac knew that it was Galangal root. Heard that Galangal root can make spices so he made a trial to grow it. One year later, the Galangal root grew up, and Mr. Ba Lac harvested more than 1.5 tonnes of tubers, sold at 4,000 VND/kg, and gained 6 million VND, equivalent to 1 ha of sugarcane at that time.

Seeing that it was effective, Mr. Ba Lac came to Luong Hoa commune (Ben Luc, Long An) to rent 6 ha of land to grow Galangal root. He said that, in addition to the use for cooking in the family, many businesses recently need large quantities of Galangal root to process and export. So, it is easy to sell Galangal root.

On average, 1 ha of Galangal root growing area can bring about 40 tonnes of tubers per year. The traders often come and purchase at a price ranging from 5,000 – 10,000 VND/kg. With 6 ha of Galangal root, each year, Mr. Ba Lac earns about 1.6 billion VND, after deducting expenses, the profit is over 900 million VND. In 2016 alone, the price of Galangal root went up to VND 22,000/kg, his income was more than twice as much as many years ago. Not to mention, every year, he also sells 4 tonnes of Galangal root for seedlings, which brings an income of about 600 million VND. Thanks to the effective cultivation of Galangal root, Mr. Ba Lac had money to both build a new house on the bank of the Xang Lon canal and buy all the facilities in his house.

Many farmers in Binh Loi commune have planted Galangal root with a total area of more than 53 ha, which help them overcome poverty and get rich like Mr.Ba Lac. The transition from planting traditional plants to Galangal root has improved the economic efficiency in the direction of commodity production in Binh Loi commune. However, this is just the spontaneous direction of the people. It is necessary to have attention from all levels of government in the search for stable, long-term consumption markets for the Galangal root. So, this plant becomes truly a commodity plant bringing sustainable economic effects to local people.

Mr. Ba Lac shared his experience: “Galangal root is easy to grow and has fewer pests. When the plant is young, it is recommended to apply a lot of protein fertilizers so that the plant can grow quickly. But after that, we should use phosphate fertilizer to make the tuber bigger. At the same time, we must reduce the protein fertilizer to make the leaves small, do not cover the stumps, and then young plants can sprout.”