Van Phuc is a trade village that has specialized in silk production for over one thousand years. The village is located outside of Hanoi. Trade villages are an integral part of Vietnamese life. They are typically located in rural areas or on the outskirts of a town. Individual villages focus on producing a specific product or handicraft. Products produced in a trade village are often sold in shops that surround the village.
Trade villages are important for a number of reasons. A large percentage of the population of Vietnam resides in rural areas, and the trade villages are an integral part of the rural economy. Although many trade villages incorporate technological innovations, they also retain traditional techniques and values. Each trade village has a handicraft guild which safeguards cultural values and customs.