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Th 3, 08/12/2020 | 09:19 SA

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Geographical Indication Protection of “Cao Lãnh” for Mango

On 16 September 2019, National Office of Intellectual Property has issued Decision no. 5849/QĐ-SHTT on granting Geographical indication registration certificate no. 00078 for Cao Lãnh mango. Department of Agriculture and Rural Development of Sóc Trăng province is the organization in charge of managing this GI.

Cao Lãnh mango has long been a familiar and reputable brand for domestic and international consumers, as described in a folk song “Mango in Cao Lãnh is incomparable”. 
Cao Lãnh is famous for its “cát chu” mango and “cát” mango.
“Cát chu” mango (scientific name Mangifera indica L) is a traditional variety in Đồng Tháp for generations. It is told that in the late 18th century, when Lord Nguyễn Ánh took shelter in Nha Mân (today’s Tân Nhuận Đông commune of Châu Thành district, Đồng Tháp province) with his concubines, he loved the mango of this land. Therefore, Cao Lãnh “cát chu” mango is hailed as beautiful, aromatic and tasty.
Cao Lãnh “cát chu” mango has a short, round body with convex bottom. According to veteran farmers, the name “cát chu” is given to the mango because the stem has the shape like blowing lips (“chu miệng” in Vietnamese). Others explained the name comes from the red, alluvium-like (“chu sa” in Vietnamese) pulp and skin when the fruit is ripe. Cao Lãnh “cát chu” mango has thick, firm and smooth pulp, with a chewy texture and small amount of fibre. Its taste is slightly sweet with a little sourness and a distinctive aroma. Organoleptic and quality criteria of Cao Lãnh “cát chu” mango are as followed: fruit length is 105 - 135mm, diameter is 70 - 90mm, skin thickness is 0,8 - 1,4mm, weight is 280 - 455g per fruit, pulp percentage is75 - 85%, Brix at 14 - 18%, Acid content is 0,1 - 0,3%, Brix/Axit ratio is 80 - 120, fibre percentage is 0,4 -  0,6%, Ascorbic acid (vitamin C) content is 100 - 150mg/kg.
(Picture source: https://www.sggp.org.vn/dong-thap-lan-dau-tien-xuat-khau-xoai-sang-hoa-ky-587604.html)
Comparing to Cao Lãnh “cát chu” mango, Cao Lãnh “cát” mango has a longer shape. It has a round body, visible waist, sharp top and round bottom. The fruit has thin skin and bright yellow when ripe. The skin surface has a layer of white powder and tiny brown spots. The pulp when ripe has a bright yellow colour. It is thick, firm, smooth and chewy. The fruit has little juice and fibre, sweet taste and distinctive aroma.
(Picture source: https://www.sggp.org.vn/dong-thap-lan-dau-tien-xuat-khau-xoai-sang-hoa-ky-587604.html)
Mango produced in Cao Lãnh is the same variety produced in Hòa Lộc area of Tiền Giang province. In the 1960s, as the area shares the border with Cái Bè district, Tiền Giang province, the mango variety of Hòa Lộc has been brought back and developed by Cao Lãnh farmers. 
Cao Lãnh “cát” mango has the length of 120 - 162mm, diameter of 75 - 92mm, skin thickness of 0,8 - 1,3mm, weight of 365 - 580g per fruit, pulp percentage of 75 - 87%, Brix of 17 - 22%, acid content of 0,02 - 0,4%, Brix/Acid ratio of 150 - 200, fibre content of 0,5 - 0,7%, Ascorbic acid content of 200 - 350mg/kg.
The peculiar characteristics and quality of Cao Lãnh mango are thanks to the combination between natural conditions and cultivation techniques of plantations in Cao Lãnh.
The area producing Cao Lãnh mango resides inside a monsoon tropical climate region with annual average total hour of sunlight is 2,398.6 hours, annual average temperature is 27.1ºC, annual average humidity is 83%. The terrain is relatively flat, declines from Northwest to Southeast, the altitude is 1.0 – 1.4m above sea level. These terrain and climate traits are highly suitable for the development of mango, and also are favourable conditions for off-season blooming, resulting in multiple harvests annually.
Mango productivity is highly correlated with rainfall. In the main season (natural blooming), mango flowers will bloom in January to February. To ensure healthy blooming, fructification and abundent amount of biochemical content, mango trees require low rainfall and humidity to increase the survivability of pollen grains and mitigate pests and diseases. This period concides with the dry season in Cao Lãnh with the rainfall accounts to only over 10% of the whole year, and average humidity of January, February are respectively 82%, 81% and at the lowest in March, which is 79%. From May to November, the trees require water for accumulation of juice, sugar, acids and vitamin C (Ascorbic acid) which is also the rain season in Cao Lãnh, with the rainfall accounts to 90% of the annual rainfall. 
Cao Lãnh also has a complicated system of rivers and canals, with many large ponds and lakes. This helps the irrigation for the mango plantations. Moreover, the Tiền river, one of the most important river of the Delta River, creates an area with a favourable microclimate and pedology for the mango. 
Mango in Cao Lãnh is planted mainly on alluvium soil, Thionic Fluvisols and Anthrosols. The soil has high total potassium content at 1.66 – 2.92% (comparing to 0.94% of soil for Hòa Lộc mango). 
Aside from the unique and favourable natural conditions, the cultivation techniques of local farmers also result in the peculiar characteristics of Cao Lãnh mango.
Cao Lãnh mango production area has a low terrain which is susceptible to flooding in the rain season. Furthermore, rainfall is not evenly distributed, causing draught in the dry season. Therefore, when establishing mango plantations, the first thing that needs to be done is building ditches and dykes. This is a traditional procedure of Cao Lãnh locals. This procedure helps elevating the soil surface, avoiding floods, blocking saltwater and conserving fresh water in the dry season, mitigating adverse effects from natural conditions. 
Cao Lãnh farmers have had experiences from a long time of producing mangos, creating products that are favoured by consumers. “Cát chu” and “cát” mango trees are asexually reproduced as they will bear fruit faster (2 – 2.5 years) while maintaining good traits of mother trees. 
By utilising their experiences, aside from the main season, Cao Lãnh farmers can also produce mango throughout the year by off-season blooming procedure. In plantations with stable productivity, depending on the demands, farmers can choose a time for off-season blooming. Specifically, farmers can make several trees bloom in May to June, others bloom in July to September, and November to December. Cao Lãnh farmers especially care about proper fertilizing throughout the development of mango trees. 
Thanks to its reputation, Cao Lãnh mangos are exported to many countries. Cao Lãnh mangos are not only in high quality but also beautiful aesthetically. This is the result of fruit covering when it is still young (30 – 35 days after fructification), improving the fruit colour, brighten the skin and make it shiny. This procedure also decrease the needs for pesticides, leaving minimal residue in the fruit. 
Cao Lãnh mangos are harvested when they are developed biophysically but not yet ripe. “Cát chu” mangos are harvested 85 - 90 days after fructification, while for “cát” mangos, it is 90 - 95 days. The harvested fruits are 1.00 – 1.02 in density with hard seeds. Harvesting when the time is right is the deciding factor to the quality of Cao Lãnh mango. Fruits with density over 1.02 (sink when put into water) have the same aroma as those with 1.00 – 1.02 density. However, these fruits will have soft pulp, the pulp near the seed is almost transparent, with a lot of fibre, sour and has a deep yellow colour which is not well-received by consumers. On the contrary, fruits with density of 0.95 – 0.99 (float on the water surface) has low quality, wrinkled skin and are very sour as they have not accumulated enough nutrition to mature biophysically, resulting in incomplete ripening. 
Sorting mangos by putting into water
(Source: Dr. Nguyễn Thành Tài – Deputy Director of Đồng Tháp Department of Science and Technology)
Mangos are harvested when the time is right. Harvested mangos will be preliminary sorted at the plantations, cleaned, and sorted again at the vendor. Then they will have their pathogens removed, packed, transported and stored.
Geographical area: 
- Communes of Hòa An, Tân Thuận Đông, Tịnh Thới, Tân Thuận Tây, Mỹ Trà, Mỹ Tân, Mỹ Ngãi, and wards 6 and 11 of Cao Lãnh city, Đồng Tháp province;
- Communes of Mỹ Xương, Mỹ Hội, Bình Hàng Trung, Bình Hàng Tây, Mỹ Long, Mỹ Hiệp, Bình Thạnh, An Bình, Mỹ Thọ, and Mỹ Thọ town of Cao Lãnh district, Đồng Tháp province.
Center for Examining Geographical Indication and International Trademark