In this month, January 2009, there is a good progress in term of vegetable growing adopting/adapting by the cooperating farmers. The number of farmers have significantly increased if compare to the previous months. Additionally, we note that they are applying the technique of vegetable growing very well such as seedbed preparation, seed selection, pest control based on the principle of ecological agriculture, ordinarily, farmers use botanical pesticide and other mechanical method to control pest in their farms.
According to the result of vegetable growing, farmers can increase agricultural production especially the supply of healthy vegetable for family consumption and to generate further income for the family. It is able to mitigate the dependency of vegetable import from Vietnam as well so the domestic family agricultural product is increased.
In this month, Mr. Chhin Saray who is the YCL (Young Community Leader) also have been working involved in awareness raising on negative impact of chemical pesticide to human health and environment. It is really that he works in that area, Thnot commune in Kompong Ror district, and another one commune called Chantrea which is located in Chantrea district, Svay Rieng province. Most of the farmers in that area are using huge quantity of chemical pesticide and fertilizer for rice cultivation and they lack of knowledge on prevention method and the negative impact of those chemical to human being and environment as well as the economy. With our work in that area, the project staff have cooperated actively with the village chief to arrange some main events to raise the understanding of local farmers on chemical pesticide. Currently, key farmers have gained more understanding on chemical pesticide and they are playing critical role in disseminating the message of negative impact of pesticide to the other farmers in the village.
On the other hand, the project has also conducted individual follow up visit to sugar palm farmer producer in Sithor Kandal district, Prey Veng province. They have understood more and more about the collective selling of their products in order to increase the negotiation power with middlemen for their collective benefit. It is to note that the activity relating to supporting to form sugar palm producer groups should be formed in the dry season because it is a good time for farmers to produce sugar palm and it is able to organize collective selling among the group member as well.
Finally, the conclusion is that the number of farmers who applied agricultural innovations especially vegetable growing have gradually increased to meet their family need and supply for local market. The number of key farmers who can play important role in disseminating agricultural innovations in the community is also increased as they have learned well from the project. The local authority is good cooperation with the project and they support and participate in the activity of the project.