03 - December - 2011

Study on Supply Chain and Value Chain of Vegetable Produces in Kandal, Kampot Provinces and Phnom Penh .
Results have been found that the supply volume of vegetable in Kandal Province is the biggest comparing to Kampot and Phnom Penh. Although Kandal Province had a very favorable market opportunity, additional production needed to be increased to supply to other areas of the country. One of the important market penetration strategies is by improving the production in order to increase the supply volume for both local and external areas. Moreover, this is considered as a very important way to promote local products as recently, most of the vegetable produces are directly imported from Vietnam through collectors or from wholesalers to wholesaling markets before the products are then redistributed to retailers mainly through the collectors. It is revealed that farmers in Kandal Province play a more important role than farmers in Kampot in supplying vegetables whether through direct or indirect ways to the final consumers. The marketing infrastructure is also better in Kandal Province which enable for an easier business transaction especially it provides a  smooth transportation for the collectors and producers to transport their produces to Phnom Penh and local markets. It is opposite for farmers in Kampot Province where their vegetable supply is not sufficient for local demand. Moreover, farmers are not satisfied with the cost of production since the input cost is too high to produce any net profit. Besides this, the vegetable price in Kampot is very fluctuated caused by the importation of vegetable products from Vietnam. Farmers believed that they still need some technical supports from relevant people. Those assistances may include marketing information system, marketing strategy, improved planting techniques, harvesting practices, packaging, storing and transporting.

The Adoption of Some Technologies to Improve Upland Crop Productivity.
The study was conducted in Battambang and Pailin Provinces. Peanut, cowpea, mungbean, soybean, sesame, maize and cassava are the crops commonly grown by farmer in the areas. Among those, maize is the most prioritized crop for farmers in both early wet season and main wet season. This crop receives very good demand from local and international markets especially from Thailand. Regarding the improvement of upland crop productivity, some farmers have adopted many new technologies such as applying improved varieties, chemical fertilizer, insecticide, herbicide, Rhizobium inoculants for legume crops and taking credit  etc. On the other hand, some farmers still practiced their traditional ways of farming or they still feel suspected about the effectiveness of the new technologies. Most of the farmers were interested in using improved varieties and Rhizobium inoculants for their legume crops. However, the most important concern is that Rhizobium is not yet available in Cambodia market. Results of the study have shown that, for both provinces, farmers express different attitudes in adopting different technologies.

Research on Reduction of Rice Loss During Storage
Findings from the study have revealed that farmers apply different strategies and use different tools to store their rice seed and consumption rice such as store in the jute bag, plastic wrapped in fertilizer bag, and store directly in the fertilizer bag. The three methods mentioned above were applied for rice seed only and the use of these tools result in different level of rice loss. Usually, there is 1 kg of rice loss (out of 80 kg holding capacity) caused by storing in jute bag due to weight loss and other damage factors. The loss is more if storing in the plastic bag wrapped in the fertilizer bag (4 kg out of 50 kg holding capacity). However, farmers reported that the rice seed quality is better by storing in the second choice (plastic bag wrapped in fertilizer bag). Rat pest is the most important damage factor during rice storage time. Farmers have observed that jute bag is thick and more durable than fertilizer bag. This is the reason why damage caused by rat is less for farmers who store their rice seed in the jute bag. There are some ways of storing consumption rice as practiced by farmers in the two provinces. Commonly, farmers store their rice in wooden granary, fertilizer bag, palm leave bag, wooden box and so on. These methods come with different holding capacity and provide different levels of rice loss and rice grain quality.

Farmer Assessment of their Adaptive Capacity to Climate Change
Results of the study have shown that farmers in Koul Village are likely to be highly affected by climate variability especially for those who own smaller farm size rather than farmers who own medium and large farm size. A simple explanation for this is that the small size landowners earn less income from rice crop causing them some difficulties in solving the problems on time. 
Because farming is the main source of income for farmers of the three villages, five resources or capitals (including human capital, social capital, natural capital, physical capital and financial capital) were used to study and compare the livelihood ability of farmers who possess farm land at 3 different size groups (small farm size, moderate farm size and large farm size). To assess the adaptive capacity of the groups, Spider Diagram and scoring method (1=Very low adaptive score to 5=Very high adaptive score) were used to record and compare the score for each indicator of the five capitals. These tools also allow for investigating the enabling and constraining factors faced by farmers of different groups over the issues of climate change

Improved rice establishment and productivity in Cambodia and Australia:
Farmers in Takeo province possess the average rice field of 1.18 ha/household (ranged between 0.15-8 ha/household) while the average rice land for Kampot farmers stands in average at 1.18 ha/household (ranged between 0.10-5 ha/household) and the average rice field size for Kampong Thom farmers stands at 1.43 ha/household in average (ranged between 0.13-5 ha/household).Among the 451 respondents, 80 farmers (53%) in Takeo Province cultivated early wet season rice while 63 farmers (42%) in Kampot Province and 28 farmers (19%) in Kampong Thom Province practice the same thing. On the other hand, 47 farmers (31%) in Takeo Province, 4 farmers (3%) in Kampot Province and 23 farmers (15%) in Kampong Thom Province practiced dry season rice. Almost 100% of the farmers in the three provinces cultivated wet season rice. Most of the areas dedicated for growing early wet season rice were parts for the main wet season rice areas which was categorized as double cropping system (early wet season-main wet season). Data has shown that most of the early wet season rice production was only applied in the available supplementary irrigation system. For dry season rice production, most of the cultivated land was recession rice and can only be grown one time a year. Rice yield can be differentiated by farmers of different study sites and by planting time. Table 6 shows that rice yield in Takeo Province is higher than the yield obtained by farmers in Kampot and Kampong Thom in all seasons.

The Adoption of Phka Rumduol and Sen Pidao Rice Varieties
The study has found that, in general, the adoption patterns of both rice varieties are affected by five important factors including eating quality, yield, grain quality, market price and market demand. These factors influence the decision of farmers whether or not to adopt these varieties. The populated modelings using Netica software were developed to assess the adoption of Phka Rumduol and Sen Pidao Rice Varieties for Kampong Cham. It is likely that farmers tend to adopt Sen Pidao Rice Variety more than 70 % in Kampong Cham Province.. However, yield and grain quality are the only two factors which still need to be improved by the technical people to satisfy the need of farmers and rice millers.

Dissemination and the Adoption of Appropriate Technologies for Rice Production in Cambodia.
It was found out that the adoption rate of improved rice varieties has increased from year to year. In 2009, around 61% of farmers respondents used modern rice varieties released by CARDI since 1990 till present. The utilization of CARDI’s released rice varieties provides farmers better yield comparing to their traditional rice varieties.

According to the calculation of the additional rice production, total rice land area grown CARDI’s improved varieties and the price of those rice varieties, it is likely that in 2009, the additional rice production of 506 000 tons, equivalent to 116 million USD, was obtained from growing CARDI’s rice varieties.Soil nutrition management is another important factor affecting rice yield. Most farmers apply fertilizer in both the nursery and rice fields. Results were found that more than 58% of farmers apply both chemical fertilizer and cattle manure while 26% of them apply chemical fertilizer only and 10% of them apply cattle manure only. Only 6% of the farmer respondents do not apply any type of fertilizer. The average application rate of fertilizer is 97 kg/ha. This amount is different from one farmer to another and from province to province. According to the classification of the fertilizer application rate, more than 55% of the farmers use less than 100 kg/ha of fertilizer, 34% of farmers apply fertilizer in the range of 100-199 kg/ha, 9% use fertilizer in the range of 200-300 kg/ha and only 3% of farmers apply fertilizer in a very high rate (more than 300 kg/ha).
There are some constraints faced by farmers such as pests, weeds, diseases and other insects. These factors influence the production of rice crop. To solve the problems, some farmers decided to use some pesticides, although it is not a common practice of Cambodia farmers so far. Data from the study revealed that only 22.5% of farmers applied pesticides to control pests on rice crop. There are some pesticide brands available in the Cambodia markets. However, the awareness and knowledge of farmers in selecting the right one for their crop is still imposed and needed to be improved.
Post harvest practices and management is also considered as a concern for farmers and other development practitioners. Some farmers still store their consumption rice grain in some traditional and easy ways such as fertilizer bag, wooden granary, jar, box and some other traditional tools. Around 60% of the farmers still use wooden granary (the most common Cambodian rice storage tool) to store their consumption rice while 12% store their rice grain in some traditional tools and around 28% use different kinds of bag to store their rice. Besides this, nearly 90% of the farmers store their rice seed in different types of bag while the rest still adopt traditional tools as their storing practice.

Cassava production and utilization in Cambodia.
The study found that average farm size per household was 3.89 ha while the average number of parcels was 3.94 plots. The average cassava growing  area in the northwest was 3.89 ha and 1.13 ha in southeast.  The land for growing cassava in the northwest tended to be slightly steeper then in southeast region. However, in the country as a whole, cassava was grown mainly on flat land, accounting for 53.71% of the total. Two main types of soil were found in cassava growing areas, i.e. loamy (38.68%) and sandy (37.45%). In the country, cassava farmer were found to be much more mechanized than other farmers. More than 50% of respondent were using 4-wheel tractors to prepare their land. About half of the respondents made ridges for growing cassava while the other 50% did not. The most common ridging method was parallel with plot borders followed by ridging along contour lines. The surveyed average fresh yields of cassava was 23.28 t/ha, while the dry yields of cassava was 10.93 t/ha. Only about 38% of cassava grower in Cambodia have used chemical fertilizer to improve their soil fertility and increase cassava yields. Urea was by far the most widely used fertilizer, while some DAP, mixed single-element as well as compound NPK fertilizer were also used. Those farmer that used fertilizers applied on average about 170 kg/ha, which cost approximately
84 USD. The use of cassava leaves in Cambodia is very rare, while roots were mainly sold (77.7%), used for household consumption (21%) or for animal feeding (1.3%)
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