The owner of Nhat Tam Farm is Mr. Nguyen Ba Duy, 57 years old, who stated: The grapevine is grown in a closed greenhouse with an area of about 3,000m2. The vineyard mainly cultivates Shine Muscat grapes, while the remaining portion is dedicated to other grape varieties commonly found in the market, such as black seedless grapes, black finger grapes, and Ninh Thuan grapes. After 15 months of planting and caring for the vineyard, it yielded a successful first harvest, serving visitors and supplying fruits for sale during the recent April 30th holiday. "The first harvest had a good yield. Additionally, I have gained valuable experience in tending to the vineyard for future seasons," Mr. Duy said.
Shine Muscat is a famous grape variety originating from Japan. It was later introduced to South Korea and gained worldwide recognition. The distinguishing features of Shine Muscat grapes include round, seedless fruits with fragile light green skin. The ripe fruits are juicy, sweet, and refreshing. If one were to taste Shine Muscat grapes alongside common grape varieties, they would understand why Shine Muscat commands such a high price, sometimes reaching millions of Vietnamese dong per kilogram.
Mr. Nguyen Ba Duy shared that he originally lived in Long Hoa, Binh Thuy, and over 20 years ago, he moved to Ho Chi Minh City to pursue his career. While engaged in business, the unfavorable circumstances brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic led him to consider returning to his hometown to start a new venture. Already familiar with and fond of the Shine Muscat grape variety, he chose to cultivate it in the land of Can Tho. Mr. Duy recalled, "My first challenge was the lack of support from my family, as grapevines were not a characteristic crop in the local area. Even my neighbors found the idea of me growing vineyards unrealistic. But I believed in my ability to succeed." Nhat Tam Farm, with its multimillion-dollar investment by Mr. Duy, is currently yielding significant economic returns, serving as a testament to his determination.
The grapevine is entirely cultivated within a closed greenhouse system, equipped with a cross-flow fan system for cooling and an automated irrigation system. According to Mr. Duy, Shine Muscat grapes have several advantages such as high resistance, good growth potential, and easy flowering. The most challenging aspect of this plant is that if not handled properly, the flowers and young fruits are prone to falling off. Additionally, to ensure standard, uniform, and beautiful grapes, it is necessary to decisively remove any non-standard fruits at an early stage. Mr. Duy emphasizes this point and explains that due to the high cost of Shine Muscat grapes, some people hesitate to prune and trim the vines. Consequently, when the grapes ripen, they lack a beautiful appearance, with varying sizes, irregular shapes, and reduced quality. A mature grapevine can bear multiple clusters, each weighing from 500 to 700 grams. The best harvest season with abundant and high-quality fruits is achieved by pruning immediately after the Lunar New Year and harvesting in the fifth lunar month.
During the recent holiday, Nhat Tam Farm conducted a trial by selling tickets for visitors to explore the vineyard, receiving positive feedback on social media platforms. Each admission ticket priced at 50,000 Vietnamese dong includes grape tasting at the table, a serving of tau hu (tofu pudding), and a bottle of water, along with the vineyard tour and experience. Ms. Dang Thi Van Anh, a visitor from Ninh Kieu District, said, "I learned about the vineyard through social media. The vineyard is beautiful and clean, and I have taken many beautiful photos." Ms. Nguyen Thi Kim Ha, another visitor from Hau Giang Province, expressed her amazement, saying, "I never expected to find such a well-cultivated vineyard in the Mekong Delta, especially with Shine Muscat grapes."
Mr. Duy has also introduced culinary services to cater to visitors, offering dishes such as banh xeo (Vietnamese savory pancake) and nem nuong (grilled pork sausage). Mr. Duy stated that the vineyard is still in its early stages of completion, and in the future, he plans to expand the culinary area and cultivate grapes throughout the entire land. Upon entering from Dinh Cong Chanh Street, visitors will take delightful steps beneath the lush canopy of grapevines. Mr. Duy's dedication is to successfully propagate Shine Muscat grapes, providing and transferring the cultivation techniques to local farmers, and ensuring a market for the fruits during the harvest season.
Source: Can Tho News - Translated by Hoang Dat