In the Mekong Delta with coconuts (2011)

In 2011 I spent almost 3 weeks in Vietnam, north and south. The first stop was Ben Tre Province in the Mekong Delta, where the team I worked with looked into a number of schemes designed to clean up (“to green”) industrial production. The delta is a giant rice paddy, dotted with small farms and dense with coconut palms. There are a thousand ways to use coconuts I discovered…

A small coconut charcoal factory


Meeting the director and drinking coconut milk


On the way to work through the narrow backstreets


The team outside a factory, Ben Tre province


Guided tour of a coconut sweet factory


Preparing and packing the sweets for export to China


On the shop floor, where most of the workers as well as the factory bosses were women


Shipment of coconuts on a barge ready for discharge at a mat factory


Cutting and spraying the coconut mats


Dispatch warehouses with the finished products


After several days in the delta region, the team spent a couple of nights in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), where we had arranged meetings with various officials. We stayed in a skyscraper hotel overlooking the river, with some great views. Bustling is probably the best word to describe HCMC as it is called, with an estimated 8.5 million inhabitants, the majority of whom own motorscooters…

View of the Saigon River in Ho Chi Minh City



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