File photo taken on May 20, 2020 shows newly-picked durians in Chanthaburi Province, Thailand. (Xinhua/Rachen Sageamsak)
Thailand's southern province of Pattani hopes the Chinese market will pick up its native grown Puangmanee durian to assist the province's economy which had been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic.
BANGKOK, July 3 (Xinhua) -- Thailand's southern province of Pattani said it hopes the Chinese market will pick up its native grown Puangmanee durian to assist the province's economy which had been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Pattani launched its Puangmanee durian season on Thursday, with promotions designed to lure the lucrative Chinese market for this unique variety of the pungent fruit.
Presiding over the opening of the durian festival called "Great durian, Puangmanee of Yarang district, the jewel of Pattani river basin," Pattani Governor Kraisorn Visitwong pledged to do his utmost to help reboot the local economy.
The governor said told the media that farmers in the southern provinces are working towards meeting the ASEAN Good Agricultural Practice (GAP) standards in order to boost the market for native durian, rambutan, mangosteen, southern langsat and pomelo.
Kraisorn said a huge number of Chinese people prefer to eat durians that are small in size, with smooth and creamy flesh, and with a smell that is not as pungent as larger durian varieties.
"Before the COVID-19 air travel restrictions were imposed, we have had lots of positive feedbacks from Chinese tourists who said they like Puangmanee durian," said Kraisorn.
He said he hopes that the native fruits in the Thai South will help boost both local farming and tourism incomes.
Puangmanee durian is a small-sized variety weighing 1.3 to 1.8 kg when ripe. ■