© Helvetas

BioTrade Initiative in Vietnam

© Helvetas

Vietnam has a wide variety of medicinal plants and the demand for these products is growing worldwide. Helvetas is committed to the adequate use and protection of the biodiversity of these plants.

  • Project Name
    Scaling Up of Biotrade Initiatives Within Phyto-Pharmaceutical Sector in Vietnam
  • Project Phase
    2016 to 2020
  • Funding
    This project is financed by the European Union.
  • Thematic focus
    Private Sector Development
    Urban Engagement

This project was completed in 2020.

The natural ingredients are used in pharmaceutical and cosmetic products as well as in the food industry. With this project, Helvetas Germany has upgraded the sustainable ethical biotrade business model for natural ingredients from Vietnam, so that the country has been recognized as a supplier of natural ingredients for pharmaceutical and cosmetic purposes and food production. The Vietnamese smallholder farmers and companies supported by the project have been able to supply more of these valuable products to both the domestic and international markets.

In cooperation with our Vietnamese partner organization, the "Center for Rural Development" (CRED), Helvetas Germany was responsible for project management, while CRED acted as a facilitator, advisor and provider of technical and methodological expertise. Other partners, including twelve medium-sized companies, the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Environment, also contributed to the success of the project. 

The Vietnamese smallholder farmers and enterprises supported by the project are now successfully able to increasingly supply the national and international market with high-quality natural products for pharmaceutical and cosmetic purposes as well as food production. The market connection of the Vietnamese medium-sized companies to buyers ensures the purchase of the plant-based raw materials and thus also secures a stable sales market for the rural population.

The BioTrade initiative has improved the living conditions of more than 5,000 small farmers. Demand for the products will increase in the long term and the quality remains sustainable and reliable. The project has helped to ensure that all participants in the supply chain receive a fair share of the added value, that biodiversity in Vietnam is preserved and that the traditional knowledge of the mountain population is respected.

This project was funded by the European Union. More information on the EU representation in Vietnam can be found here.

Biotrade_Vietnam_Flower | © Helvetas
With a variety of 4.000 plant species, Vietnam has become an internationally recognized supplier of medicinal plants. © Helvetas
Biotrade_Vietnam_Activity | © Helvetas
CRED acts as an important advisor in this project. © Helvetas
© Helvetas
The natural ingredients of the plants are used for pharmaceutical and cosmetic products ... © Helvetas
... and are processed in important procedures.
© Helvetas
Living conditions of more than 5.000 smallholder farmers will be improved through the BioTrade initiative. © Helvetas

The project to strengthen the sustainable ethical biotrade business model for natural ingredients from Vietnam has been successfully completed. A follow-up project is now being funded by the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), a Swiss government agency, and implemented by HELVETAS Vietnam. The main objective is to increase the competitiveness of local exporters in order to give them access to high-value markets. At the same time, improved income and employment opportunities are to be created for harvest workers and producers.
Further information can be found here.

Co-funded by the European Union

Here you can find more Information about the Work of the Helvetas Network:

How Helvetas Supports People in Vietnam

Helvetas promotes sustainable tourism in the mountainous regions of Vietnam and advocates for the protection of medicinal plants.

Our Vision and Mission

Our vision is of a just world in which all men and women determine the course of their lives in dignity and security, using environmental resources in a sustainable manner.