Ba khia is a species of crab, concentrated extensively in the mangrove forests in Ca Mau province. Its breeding season falls in the tenth month of the lunar calendar. The mass catching of the crabs stimulated the locals to come up with a way to preserve them with salt to make sauce.

The three-striped crab sauce making is practiced mainly in Nam Can, Dam Doi or Phu Tan districts, but the most famous brand comes from Rach Goc town in Ngoc Hien district.

It has been practised by generations of locals and modified in different areas, but its unique traditional flavour, which is famed nationwide, has still been retained. Over time the sauce has become an indispensable specialty of the southernmost land.

With an aim to uphold the provincial tourism potential, the People’s Committee of Ca Mau province is building a plan to protect and promote the values of local intangible cultural heritages.

The province will compile dossiers to submit to the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, seeking recognition of National Intangible Cultural Heritage for the local heritages including Nghinh Ong – Song Doc Festival, Hung King Temple Festival or the traditional craft of making dried shrimp.

Earlier, the traditional beekeeping in U Minh and Tran Van Thoi districts in Ca Mau province was also recognised as a national intangible cultural heritage.