Ly Son island district in Quang Ngai Province – the homeland of the Hoang Sa Flotilla is considered as the kingdom of onions and garlic which have unique tastes which is better than all of the other kinds of garlic in Vietnam. Garlic grown in Ly Son has pleasant fragrant, sweet, less hot and less strong. Because the garlic pieces are as white as the colour of a pearl, we call Ly Son garlic the King of garlic or a beautiful name Pearl garlic.
Similar to other kinds of garlic, Ly Son garlic is used as a spice to cook a lot of delicious dishes, enhance food flavor and remove food odor. In addition, it could be used to make sweet and sour pickled garlic which is very healthy and tasty. Ly Son garlic has been used as medicine, the chemical compound in this kind of garlic can improve the immune system, slow down aging, defeat cancer. Orphaned garlic (Lonely garlic) which has only one clove is very good, rare and expensive for its strange looking, great taste, sweet smell and nutrient-rich.
It has been said that the ancestors reclaimed Ly Son Island and brought onions and garlic to grow on the island to server their daily life approximately 400 years ago. Before 1975, onions and garlic were only planted in the garden of each family. However, after the national reunion the onion and garlic products on Ly Son Island were brought to the other regions of the country and has become the most favorite garlic. So that Ly Son people have started expanding the garlic cultivation area.
To make these plants root into the sand and grow well, the locals must work very hard. During the period of planting to harvest, apart from fertilizing, they must water the plants twice a day in the early morning and in the afternoon. If they forget to water the plants once, the plants will immediately die.
In 2009, the National Office of Intellectual Property, under the Ministry of Science and Technology, recognized the trademark for the garlic and onion products of Ly Son that creates the premise for these agricultural products to expand in the domestic and foreign markets. Ly Son has about 300ha for cultivating onions and garlic, accounting for 1/3 of the total area of the island. Each crop, Ly Son provides the domestic and foreign market over 5,000 tonnes of dried onions and garlic.
Besides fishing, onion and garlic cultivation is the major trade that help local people to earn their living and develop the economy, making a contribution to protecting the national island sovereignty. Ly Son garlic is the pride of the island district. It has become a valued gift to bring home from Ly Son. In 2017, VietKings – Vietnam Records Organization has just published “Top 10 specialty foods to buy in Vietnam” in which Ly Son garlic is listed as the number 4.