15/06/2021 09:33 GMT+7 Email Print Like 0

Ba Moi grapes

Visiting sunny and windy Ninh Thuan, tourists often choose to stop at Ba Moi grape farm. Waiting for them there is a lovely vineyard, delicious wines and juices and the warm welcome of Nguyen Van Moi (Ba Moi),  the farm’s owner.
A man, over 70 years old, tall and friendly, knowledgeable and passionate about grapes, is the image of Ba Moi and has made an unforgettable impression on many visitors. Ba Moi grapes is now a well-known brand name in many parts of the country, but few people know that in order to achieve such success, Ba Moi had to invest enormous effort and time in his property and business.

An ordinary farmer, Ba Moi started growing grapes in the early 80s and was one of the local pioneers of growing this fruit. At that time, the land was new, grapes were new crops, the environment was cleaner and fresher, and therefore had less pests and diseases damaging the crops. Starting with the Repe black grape in an area of 500m2, Ba Moi got used to staying up all night using only a small lamp to catch insects that were destroying his grapes. He later changed to the Red Cardinal grape, and in 2001 he tried out the NH-0148 green grape. Today, his farm has expanded to an area of about 2ha.

 

Nguyen Van Moi takes care of the vineyard. Photo: Nguyen Luan / VNP


Ba Moi vineyard produces about 50 tons/year. Photo: Le Minh / VNP


Nguyen Van Moi introduces students of Nha Trang Agricultural University
to wine fermentation and the fermentation process. Photo: Kim Phuong / VNP



Nguyen Van Moi introduced tourists to the process
of grape growing at Ba Moi grape farm. Photo: Kim Phuong / VNP



Production line of grape juice at Ba Moi grape farm. Photo: Kim Phuong / VNP
 


Grape wine from Ba Moi grape farm. Photo: Nguyen Luan / VNP

In 2000, while many people gave up grapes to grow apples or other more economically efficient crops, Ba Moi kept his vineyard. Thanks to the help of the Institute of Agricultural Science for Southern Vietnam and the Department of Science and Technology of the province, he started using microbiological organic fertilizers on grapes and had good results. In 2007, when the VietGAP farming program started, Ba Moi applied and was certified in 2010.

The VietGAP certification was a turning point for Ba Moi grapes as the business started extending its reach beyond the provincial borders. Currently over 70% of Ba Moi's output is consumed outside Ninh Thuan. Ba Moi Grape Farm also started to introduce new products such as wine and grape juice. Now with 6 stores in major markets including Ho Chi Minh city, Hanoi, Quang Ninh and recently Da Nang and Vinh (Nghe An), the average monthly output of Ba Moi grapes has reached nearly 80 tons of fresh grapes and 250 bottles of wine.

Recalling the growth of the brand, Ba Moi said that although over 80% of the farm’s harvest was sold fresh, it was the processed products that made the money, especially wine. To provide for the wine-making business, Ba Moi Grape Farm uses 0.5 ha to grow grape varieties used for wines such as Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Sauvignon Blanc. Ripe grapes, after being harvested, must go through a complex, multi-step process that takes from one year to one and a half years to produce a 0.75 liter of Ba Moi wine meeting international standards.

The second product is grape juice. Every year, Ba Moi farm puts about 3-4 tons of grapes into producing this beverage and has an output of 5,000-6,000 bottles (capacity 0.5 liters). Recently, in order to expand its line of processed goods, Ba Moi has invested 500 million dong to install a processing line to make products such as, dried grapes and grape jam.

A farmer and a businessman, Ba Moi has developed his vineyard into a model of the new wave of grape growing in Ninh Thuan
Story: Nguyen Luan        Photos: Le Minh, Nguyen Luan & Kim Phuong
     
Translated by Hong Hanh