Cham Islands’ bird's nest products get GI certification

After four years of preparations, the National Office of Intellectual Property of Vietnam has granted Geographical Indication (GI) to the Cham Islands bird’s nest products.

Cham Islands’ bird's nest products get GI certification

Birds build nests on vertical cliffs in a cave on Cham Islands. (Photo: Quang Nam Newspaper)

The Hoi An city People’s Committee, which has jurisdiction over the islands, said the product contributed 20% to the city’s Gross Regional Domestic Product (GRDP) annually.

A report from the Ministry of Science and Technology said the bird’s nests are seen as one of the best products in Vietnam due to their high nutritional value with 50% protein.

The year-round cool climate and well-protected terrain on the islands naturally create the best quality for the salangane product, the report unveiled.

The GI recognition will help improve the product’s brand and protect it from being mixed with other bird’s nest products from Khanh Hoa and Binh Dinh provinces.

The management board of bird’s nest production on Cu Lao Cham Islands said the exploitation of birds’ nest earned 1.3 tonnes of raw product worth VND80 billion (US$3.5 million) per year.

Currently, a kilo of bird’s nest costs from US$1,000 to 6,000.

Hoi An is focusing on traditional production of the islands’ bird’s nest products to create luxury products rather than mass industrial processing.

Last year, the city established a rescue centre in Mui Dua Cave in an attempt to rescue the thousands of baby swallows that fall from their nests each year.

April and August is the main time of bird’s nest collection at three caves on three islets of Kho, To Vo and Ca of the islands.

The GI recognition also covers the brand protection and labels product from different caves on eight islets.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Vietnam’s bird’s nest exports are expected to swell in the coming year.

Forty-two out of 63 provinces and cities in Vietnam participate in the swift breeding industry with a total of 20,000 birdhouses and an annual volume of approximately 120 tonnes, worth about US$450 million.

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