29.11.2020, 16:37

Sun-kissed persimmons fruit of their labor for Da Lat farmers

A Japanese technology transfer has many Da Lat families adding value to their persimmons by hang drying them instead of selling them fresh.

Persimmon has been grown for decades in Da Lat, a town located 1,500 meters above sea level in the Central Highlands province of Lam Dong. The town is famous as a national hub for flowers, vegetables and fruits.

The persimmon season in Da Lat normally starts in late August and ends in November. But many locals do not harvest the fruit and sell them immediately. They dry the fruit in sunshine using a method initiated in Japan.

First, the persimmons are washed to remove dust and left to dry.

Next they are peeled carefully with their stems left intact.
“Workers must be careful to get beautiful persimmons,” said one of the farmers.

The peeled persimmons are then dried in an oven for a short time so that they develop a firm outer layer. Dang Thi Thu Van, a woman with a lot of experience in using this method, said ripe persimmons are baked at 50-60 degrees Celsius for around 3 hours.

The fruit is then hung for three weeks in a room with the temperature at around 25-30 degrees Celsius.
Dried persimmons are not a new product for Vietnamese farmers, but the effectiveness of the Japanese technique, transferred to Vietnamese farmers around a decade ago by experts from the Japan International Corporation Agency (JICA), adds looks, quality and taste.

PThe persimmons are hung separately on plastic hangers. The method uses no chemicals and its final phase is the slow-drying process with sunlight and wind.

Workers check the persimmons regularly to make sure their outer “skin” does not moldy. When the rainy season ends, many Da Lat farmers get busy with their persimmons business.

Fans keep insects at bay. The processing technique depends partly on natural light and wind, so unpredictable weather conditions may affect its effectiveness.

Dried persimmons are sold for about VND450,000 ($19.50) per kg. They can be stored in freezers and eaten without defrosting.

Apart from their marketplace allure, the bright, colorful and beautiful sight of dried persimmons is a powerful tourist magnet.

Source: https://e.vnexpress.net/news/travel/food/sun-kissed-persimmons-fruit-of-their-labor-for-da-lat-farmers-4198771.html