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Organic co-ops sign on for ‘contract farming’

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Six rice agricultural cooperatives signed an agreement on “contract farming” with the Cambodian Agriculture Cooperative Cooperation (CACC) to help organic farmers overcome market limitations on Monday. Hin Pisei

Organic co-ops sign on for ‘contract farming’

Six rice agricultural cooperatives on Monday signed an agreement on “contract farming” with the Cambodian Agriculture Cooperative Cooperation (CACC) to help organic farmers overcome market limitations.

CACC representative Kann Kunthy said he wants to see the Kingdom’s agricultural market improve by promoting organic crops, which have seen an increase in demand.

“Through this contract, the community will see some key benefits, such as a market price of between 20-40 per cent [higher than normal crops], the provision of good seeds and other marketing guarantees,” he said.

The CACC is a subsidiary of Amru Rice (Cambodia) Co Ltd, a major local rice processer and exporter.

Since its launch in 2017, the CACC has signed “contract farming” agreements with eight rice cooperatives, 10 cassava communities, seven cashew communities and two pepper communities.

Kong Pheach, director of the Department of Agro-industry under the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, who attended the signing ceremony, said farming communities would see a lot of benefits if they arrange production to suit the demands of their buyers.

The ministry’s goal is to encourage contract farming to appease concerns about market limitations, he said, adding: “Signing such agreements is sure to bring a lot of benefits to farmers and we hope that more will be made.”

He said about 60 agricultural agreements have been signed since the beginning of this year, while 90 were signed all last year.

Four of the six cooperatives that signed with the CACC on Monday were from Kampong Chhnang province, one from Takeo and one from Kampong Speu provinces.

Hem Sothea, vice-president of the Kraing Lvea organic rice community in Kampong Chhnang province, which has 223 members, said her community produced a lot of rice but faced market issues.

“I hope that the company will assist in the harvest and provide reasonable prices for the farmers,” she said.

As of the end of last year, the ministry has established a total of 1,166 farming communities, of which 120 communities are being driven to become “example” communities and agri-businesses, said the report.

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