From August 23rd to August 25th, 2023, a group of 24 farmers from Rous Rorn Commune embarked on a study tour aimed at enhancing their agricultural knowledge and practices. The event was organized by the Provincial Department of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries (PDAFF) in Preah Vihear.
The primary objectives of this study tour were to deepen the farmers' understanding of cover crops and their benefits, especially when integrated into cassava cultivation, to assess soil quality, and to provide training on Conservation Agriculture and Sustainable Intensification (CA/SI) techniques.
The 24 farmers from Rous Rorn Commune visited the practice farms of their peers in Rik Reay Commune, both within the Rovieng district of Preah Vihear province. In addition to the farmers, the tour participants were graced by the presence of representatives from Department of Extension for Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DEAFF) and the Conservation Agriculture Research for Development Center (CARDEC), institutions deeply committed to advancing sustainable agricultural practices in the region. Local authorities and supporting partners also joined in, fostering a collaborative and inclusive environment for learning.
The study tour aimed to equip farmers and agricultural workers with practical knowledge and experiences related to several crucial aspects of modern agriculture:
- Understanding the Benefits of Soil Cover Crops: Participants had the opportunity to explore the advantages of planting cover crops, including their role in soil enrichment and pest management.
- Integrating Soil Cover Crops with Cassava Cultivation: The tour focused on the strategic planting of cover crops in between cassava plants, emphasizing the synergistic benefits of this approach.
- Key Principles of Soil Health and Function: Farmers delved into the fundamentals of soil health and its critical role in sustaining productive agriculture.
- Conservation Agriculture and Local Adaptation: The tour introduced participants to Conservation Agriculture practices and encouraged them to tailor these methods to their specific local contexts, promoting sustainable farming.
The study tour for farmers from Rous Rorn Commune represents a significant step in advancing agricultural practices in Preah Vihear province. By providing hands-on experience, knowledge, and exposure to innovative techniques, this initiative is poised to empower local farmers to adopt more sustainable and productive farming methods. The collaborative efforts of PDAFF, DEAFF, CARDEC, local authorities, and supporting partners underscore the commitment to elevating agricultural practices in the region. The learnings from this tour will undoubtedly contribute to the ongoing journey of agricultural development in Preah Vihear province.