A pangasius festival organized by the People's Committee of Dong Thap Province in Hong Ngu Town last week attracted thousands of participants.
Themed "Reaching out to the great sea," the event on December 16 and 17 aimed to promote the image of the pangasius capital and honor veteran farmers, laying the foundation for Vietnam's billion-dollar export industry.
The festival includes trips to the farming area and a pangasius processing factory, conferences and seminars to discuss solutions for product development, scientific and technical application, and product quality improvement; events to honor farmers, businesses, researchers who have contributed to the industry; and other community activities.
After the opening night, the organizers released three tons of wild fish into local waterways as one of the measures to restore and regenerate aquatic resources in nature.
Participants had the opportunity to enjoy food, shop for pangasius products and many local specialties and visit traditional craft villages.
Duong Huynh from HCMC said she and her friends were quite excited when attending the festival, which recreated the image of the old Hong Ngu, where pangasius farming started with rustic stilt houses. From there, visitors can understand more about how fish export and processing plants have helped bring a prosperous life and create jobs for local people.
Pangasius is one of Vietnam's key exports with a turnover of more than US$2 billion per year, farmed mainly in the Mekong Delta. Vietnam's pangasius is exported to nearly 150 countries such as the U.S., China, Japan and countries in Europe and Southeast Asia.
According to statistics from the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, in 2022, Vietnam is estimated to produce 27 billion pangasius fry; 3.8 billion pangasius fingerlings, a slight increase over last year. The area of commercial pangasius farming has reached about 5,500 hectares, the output reached 1.6 million tons.
Dong Thap alone provides 60% of the production of fingerlings in the West and nearly 35% of the commercial production of the Mekong Delta.
In addition to salmon, mackerel, catfish..., pangasius is a popular fish with many nutritional values in the delta. It contains a lot of omega-3, 6, 9, DHA and EPA, vitamin E which are beneficial for the heart, helps with brain development, and prevent aging. Protein in fish is usually easier to digest and absorb than animal meat.
Pangasius fat contains a high percentage of unsaturated fatty acids. It does not contain cholesterol and does not cause weight gain.