Wind pump handover to communities in Svay Rieng

Svay Rieng: On March 10, 2015 a meeting organised to handover 2 wind pumps to communities in Kampong Chamlang commune and Sangkat Chek in Svay Rieng province. Windpump management committees, members of windpump user groups, village chief, commune Councillor and CFAP (including director and agriculture advisor), and staff of SNV’s climate smart agriculture project participated in the meeting.

Windpump

Windpump

windpump handover video clip

windpump handover video clip

It is to notice that, under the climate smart agriculture project, 2 windpumps were installed for farmers. Farmers used the wind pump to pump water from nearby natural water reservoir to irrigate their rice field, some farmers also applied vegetable growing in the dry season.

Through the use of windpump, farmers can save at least 50% of total expense on diesel, but they need to maintain the windpump regularly.

To be sustained, some key points need to be considered:

  • windpump management committees need to have sufficient capacity to manage and operate their groups (e.g. agricultural production planning, water distribution, water fee collection, conflict resolution, etc.)
  • both windpump management committee and group members need to have strong ownership and participation in sustainable use and maintenance of the wind pump;
  • local repairers are available for maintenance and repairing of the windpump in case of minor repairing is needed. Local repairers should be paid for their work;
  • good communication between user groups and wind pump suppliers in case of spare part or big repairing is needed;
  • support from local authorities (village chief, commune Councillor…) is needed.

Link technology supplier to farmers

27 February 2015, Svay Rieng province: Two field demonstration conducted in Svay Chrum district of Svay Rieng province. The demonstration of treadle pumps, fruit fly trap and rice planting machine were interested by farmers in this community. A woman farmer in Svay Taplor village said “after testing the use of treadle pump, I think that I will save time and labour to carry water from pond to irrigate my vegetables”

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According to BB2C, the manufacturer of this tool, the cost of treadle pump 120$/unit. It can be linked with sprinkler system to be used for irrigation purpose. Fruit fly trap looked very effective in pest insect control, and the cost 6$/unit. The rice planting machine is about 600$/unit. This may be affordable with group of farmers or farmer association rather than individual farmers to purchase it. However, it needs to further improve to make it more applicable in the field. Short clip of the field demonstration in Svay Taplor village is here for your view https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uHm90A7-BE4

Regional Climate Smart Agriculture (CSA) Workshop in Frangipani Hotel, Phnom Penh,

The meeting aimed to update the progress and develop CSA models that fit CSA global models. The meeting was organised with 10 CSA team members in Frangipani Hotel, Phnom Penh from 16-18th February 2015, and a field visit to Svay Rieng province conducted from 19 to 20 February 2015.

Participants of the CSA meeting in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Participants of the CSA meeting in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Mr. Erik, SNV-Cambodia country director provided speech to open the meeting. He put main focus on development of CSA models that fit CSA models at the global level. Additionally, he added that CSA technologies much be profitable to farmers.

Below is the CSA models at the global level.

CSA model

Other key topic discussed in the meeting were case study, CSA communication, monitoring and evaluation, including theory of change (ToC), indicators for measuring outcome and resilience, and gender sensitive.

ToC is a living document and may call for adjustment where necessary and where new information is gained.

Each of the country team from Cambodia, Lao, Bhutan and Nepal presented the progress of the CSA project, theory of change, as well as supported needed in terms of business development, communication and gender integration.

The participants also discussed about role and responsibilities of the CSA team in doing the business development.

Some points to be added into the CSA intervention were soil testing, CSA needs to consider all spectra of production, cost benefit analysis, etc.

Meeting with PDA- Svay Rieng

From 1-2 February 2015, Mr. Yim Soksophors, advisor for the climate smart agriculture project of SNV Netherlands Development Organisation conducted a field trip to Svay Rieng province. The purpose of the field trip was to meet with the Provincial Department of Agriculture of Svay Rieng to present the CSA project progress and activity plan for next quarter from Jan to March 2015.

5 PDA staff, including PDA director, CSA focal point, and other relevant staff met during the meeting.

The meeting conducted at meeting hall of the PDA Svay Rieng. As result, the meeting enabled PDA director and relevant staff to keep in touch with the CSA project progress and activity plan for next quarter. During the meeting, the PDA director were happy with the achievement of the project especially the contribution of the CSA project to build-up capacity of the PDA staff related to the climate smart agriculture. At the end of the meeting, the PDA director also provided some recommendations:

  1. Concerning to the rainwater harvesting, he suggested another alternative. Using water pipes to collect rainwater to be used for irrigation. “Besides the tarpaulin lining pond, this is also another option to be considered” he said.
  1. He also suggested the CSA project team to check with General Directorate of Agriculture (GDA)’s Agriculture Tool Office to find out which water supply tools/agricultural equipment that save water.

Rain water harvesting pond

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Water harvesting pond is the key for small farmers to harvest rain water to be used later in the drier month for agricultural production. With this pond the farmers can apply at least 3 cropping cycles of vegetable production per year, which is good for them to produce food and incomes for the family. Normally, short rotation vegetable varieties are planted to reduce the use of water and to reduce vulnerability to water shortage.

This pond was supported by CFAP farmer federation to a woman vegetable farmer through its climate change adaptation project.

Field assessment, data collection and annual planning meetings in Tboung Khmum and Svay Rieng

Under the climate smart agriculture project of SNV, Sophors and Kirina conducted a field visit to Tboung Khmum and Svay Rieng province from 28 to 30 January 2015.

Purposes of the field trip:

  • To collect data/information about the cassava intercropping and water use in vegetable production, To identify and select the farmers to do research on water storage and supply systems in vegetable production in Svay Rieng province,
  • To prepare quarterly work plan with the Provincial Department of Agriculture of Svay Rieng province

Who we met:

  • 8 farmers (2 women) from Svay Rieng and 6 farmers (3 women) in Tboung Khmum
  • 2 CFAP staff
  • 2 PDA staff from Svay Rieng

Field visit Tboung Khmum

  •  The CSA project team, Sophors and Kirina, visited 6 farmers in Tboung Khmum who are involved in Cassava trial research. We noticed that despite a good portion of farmers in the area already harvested, many of the farmers involved in the trials have not harvested Cassava. The intercrops were earlier harvested. This included Cowpea and Corn. The reason advance for this late harvesting despite sliding prices was attributed to the fact most of these trial farms are close to farmer’s homes and can be harvested anytime. Additionally, because of challenges of shortage of Cassava cuttings experienced in the previous seasons.
  • The trial crops were looking healthy and on average farmers projects yields of about 20t/ha. For few farmers who have harvested, yields vary from as low as 15t/ha to max of 25t/ha.
Cassava harvested and kept for planting in next season

Cassava harvested and kept for planting in next season

  • The benefits accruing from intercropping seems not be well appreciated or understood by farmers. The key focus for them was on reduced yield on a single crop. Intercropping provides opportunities for improving household food security as the intercrop often legumes matures earlier, Improves soil health. Additionally if compared to monocrop, intercrop utilises land efficiently. These feedbacks will be considered during training manual preparation.

Field visit Svay Rieng

Visit to Svay Rieng involved three activities.

  1. Field assessment of pilot farmers who have tarpaulin ponds and Rovai pumps in 5 villages across 5 communes of Svay Chrum district. Most farmers are doing their last crop as water levels in the ponds have gone down considerably in most ponds. Often farmers reduce land size for vegetable cultivation during dry season and while others stop irrigation giving priority to aquaculture.
  1. Identification for farms for treadle pump demonstration

With the intention to increase outreach of CSA technologies, SNV and CFAP staff toured different farms to identify farms that can be used as demonstration plots. Different criteria were settled upon to be used in the selection. The farmers musts:

  1. A vegetable farmer
  2. Have enough land for demonstration
  • Stay in the village and less likely to migrate
  1. Active or willing to play an active role in the process
  2. Willing to provide labour and contribute at least 20% of the needed financial resources.
A vegetable farmer in Kampong Chamlong commune shared his experience in vegetable growing and drip irrigation system

A vegetable farmer in Kampong Chamlong commune shared his experience in vegetable growing and drip irrigation system

Meeting with farmers talking about his experience in water use in vegetable production

Meeting with farmers talking about his experience in water use in vegetable production

  1. Meeting with PDA staff

We met with Svay Rieng PDA staff for a planning meeting to discuss some of the activities planned for the first quarter of 2015.The discussion was to clarify the role of the LCB partner. We expect with frequent contact with CSA team, commencement of activities implementations. Intention to visit other relevant projects including PADDY in the area was also mentioned. This is still preliminary and will be confirmed in a later date.

  1. Preparation for CSA regional meeting field visit.

A discussion with CFAP concerning preparation for CSA regional field visits was discussed. CFAP with support from CSA Cambodia team, will liaise with other partners in the province to arrange for meetings with the regional team.

End of year workshop on Climate Smart Agriculture project

Tboung Khmum district hall, Tboung Khmum Province, Cambodia

SNV Cambodia has been undertaking Climate Smart Agriculture (CSA) project from the beginning of 2014 as a part of the regional CSA programme covering Cambodia, Nepal, Bhutan, and Laos PDR. The project works with small holder farmers in Svay Rieng and Tboung Khmum provinces targeting vegetable and Cassava value chains respectively. As part of knowledge and experience sharing, a workshop to mark end of first year of the project was conducted in Tboung Khmum to share experiences and lessons learnt so far while getting feedback to improve planning of the project the following year.

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Participants of the end year project workshop, Tboung Khmum district hall

The workshop was honoured by the presence of government’s agencies Tboung Khmum Provincial Department of Agriculture, Commune councils, deputy village chief, commune clerk, Input suppliers, Cassava collectors, Vigilant organisation as well as ACLEDA Bank. The workshop consisted of 39 participants (7 women or approximately 18%) (See annex I for participant list).

The opening session of the workshop was chaired by Deputy District Governor (Tboung Khmum district), Mr. Heng Piseth, Director of the Provincial Department of Agriculture (Tboung Khmum province), and Mr. Kitinya Kirina (SNV advisor). Mr. Kirina asked the audience to take advantage of the workshop make inquiries considering the broad range of participants from input suppliers to technical experts and cassava wholesalers. He also appreciated the contribution of intercropping for cassava production among smallholder farmers. Mr. Heng Piseth mentioned in his speech that PDA Tboung Khmum is new. So there is limited resources including staff, materials / equipment’s and other resources at this moment. Although, the PDA is making effort to improve agricultural extension especially for cassava farmers because majority of the farmers in the province are cassava farmers. In the opening speech, the deputy district governor put main focus on climate change impact on agricultural and livelihood activities of the people in rural areas. He briefly explained the participants what climate change is, causes and impact of climate change as well as adaptation and mitigation measure to deal with the climate change issues.

The workshop saw various presentations around cassava production and two parallel sessions (see annex ii). Mr. Yim Soksophors provided a general background on SNV Climate smart agriculture programme touching on various solutions being implemented by different countries within the projects and goals of the SNV CSA programme. This was followed by a presentation by Mr. Kitinya Kirina who presented on; Findings/Key output of the CSA project. Mr. Lim Sokundarun presented about situation of cassava production and market in Cambodia. After the three presentations, the participants went on a parallel sessions where two topics were tackled a) Cassava production techniques and b) Contextual challenges in the cassava value chain. Participants were asked to go around and have a look at the findings form each group. Representatives from each group were asked to give short summary of their discussions. In the afternoon sessions, input supplier presented on input supply. The floor was then opened for a question and answer sessions at the ends of the presentations. A synthesis of the key outcomes of the presentations and discussions is included.

  • Cassava is planted in the rainfed areas so that farmers wholly rely on rainwater. So proper cassava production planning or better access to climate information would helped farmers to prepare a smart production plan in dealing with the drought. In addition, together with the intercropping practices, the farmers will be able to maintain and improve their soil for sustainable use, not only that the farmers can also produce additional food sources for family consumption and income from the application of intercropping.
  • The farmers have gained knowledge and experience through carrying out the trials (intercropping in cassava production) that introduced by the CSA project in 2014. This knowledge and experience will enable them to improve cassava production practices and adaptation to climate change in next seasons.
  • Make available good quality agricultural inputs (e.g. cassava cutting stems) is very important for farmers. Currently, the farmers rely on cassava cutting stems imported from Vietnam, however those cassava cutting stems are not good quality, and they are sometimes infected with diseases and/or pest insects.
  • Understanding on climate change concept is very necessary and important for all local stakeholders especially for the commune councils and district councils to integrate the climate change adaptation into local development plans.
  • Cassava is second important cash crops, majority of the farmers in Tboung Khmum involve in the cassava production. However, high proportion of fresh cassava produced is export to Vietnam. The Royal Government of Cambodia is making effort to create a favourable policy and condition for domestic market and export market, especially China market.
  • Further support and coordination among relevant government specialised agencies, private sectors and farmers / farmer groups are strongly needed to ensure a good cassava value chain.

The workshop session was closed out by a brief wrap up from Mr. Yim Soksophors who highlighted the key discussion points in the workshop. He also mentioned about active participation of the participants to give inputs especially during the parallel discussion and build network for future cooperation among the participants in the future. He added that key ideas for CSA project to be implemented next year were generated from the workshop. The farmers have learned and received good experience from the cassava trials (intercropping) and would help to boost productivity and resiliency of the farmers to deal with climate change impact. He also summarized what farmers going forward would be interested in and what role the government agencies and other relevant intuitions should play. Mr. You Tainghy appreciated the sharing of the participants and officially closed the workshop.

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