U San Thaung; 52-years-old; Farmer; Seed Producer; Secretary of Farmer Pool
U San Thaung is a farmer from GyatChaung Village which is situated at the eastern-bank of Bogalay River. He owns 9 acres of farm growing the paddies in both summer and monsoon seasons. Since the beginning of the SEED Project of RadanarAyar, he collaborated as a Secretary of farmer pool representing the farmers from his village and also became a seed producer.
As a secretary of GyatChaung Farmer Pool, he fills up his responsibilities at best under the Chairperson and the farmer pool performs some groundbreaking activities for the farmers from the village. As an instance, the farmer pool raised the fund from project collaborated farmers and procured the nitrogenous fertilizers. Then the fertilizers were distributed to all the farmers from the village (there are total 25 farmers in GyatChaung Village). Therefore, the farmers can use the fertilizers in time and can pay back the money after harvesting. This activity benefits to both parties: farmer pool and the farmers because the farmer pool could raise its fund about 70,000 kyat grossly.
U San Thaung also ensures to motivate the farmers as in attending meetings, seeder application in summer crop production and systematic fertilizer application. Not only motivating the other farmers, he, himself, also adopt the improved agricultural techniques. As a seed producer, he practices hand transplantation in his all acres (9 acres) and there are always 3 acres of seed production since 2012.
“I practice the techniques systematically as directed by RadanarAyar – for plantation, fertilizer application and roughing. I also interested in the quality of the seeds and therefore always send to RadanarAyar for testing. Although the quality can be said ‘improved’, it’s only in visible not scientific. That’s why I want to know is it real improvement (scientifically). Due to the results, I am happy that I became a seed grower”- said by U San Thaung.
The seed produced from the farm of U San Thaung always meets the seed-criteria set-out by Central Seed Bank (CSB) of the project and in 2013 Monsoon harvesting season, 10 baskets of Paw-Hsan-Hmway were sold as certified seeds tothe CSB. The rest baskets were sold to other farmers from the village and nearby villages. Including Paw-Hsan-Hmway, Thee-Htat-Yin and Shwe-Pyi-Htay, U San Thaung could sell the seeds at 130 baskets in total for monsoon 2013 production.[In 2013 Monsoon, U San Thaung participated as a collaborating farmer for Baby Trials (farmer assisted research) and cultivated four varieties including Shwe-Pyi-Htay. Due to preference of farmers, U San Thaung sold Shwe-Pyi-Htay as seed to two farmers].
U San Thaungsaid, “In this monsoon (2013), I sold 10 baskets of paw-hsan-hmway to CSB; 5 baskets of shwe-pyi-htay and 25 baskets of thee-htat-yin within village; 65 baskets of thee-htat-yin to farmers from Myin-Ka-Kone Village; and 25 baskets of paw-hsan-hmway to Sat-Kyun Villages”. He continues, “Although I practiced hand transplantation previously, it didn’t result properly. After collaboration with RadanarAyar, the results become better and better because of systematic technical supports for the whole process of production. Yes, the hand transplantation is necessary but also need to follow by other necessary practices in fertilizer, roughing and even in harvesting. Now, I know the benefit of seed production and how to produce seed. In upcoming seasons, I will try to expand the seed production acres as much as I can”.
U Khin Myint; 62-years-old; Farmer; Seed Producer; Treasurer of Farmer Pool
U Khin Myint is one of the seed producers collaborated with the SEED Project of Radanar Ayar. He owned 100 acres of farm and main variety of producing the paddies are paw-hsan-hmway and sin-thwe-latt. Not only for project collaborated production, he practices hand transplantation also in another 10 acres of production. The main constraint for adopting hand transplantation in all farms is the geographical situation of farms – situating in deep-water (flood) areas.
As the benefit of adopting hand transplantation, his farms yield 50 baskets per acre in 2012 Monsoon and 65 baskets per acre (in average) in 2013 Monsoon production [normally 40 baskets per acre for broadcasted farms] for paw-hsan-hmway variety.
Although he has large number of farming acres, he can only grow in monsoon season because of high salinity of water in summer. However, he always wishes for cultivating the paddies in summer season and tested in 2013 summer for 3 acres of sin-thwe-latt variety on his own.According to his request, the technicians from Radanar Ayar had to check after the season. As the result from it, the paddies have large portion of unfilled grains. This is because of some causes: 1) long age period of variety, 2) late cultivation and 3) high intensity of saline water. Then he was suggested to select the shorter-aged variety and to grow earlier as much as possible after monsoon production. And in 2014 summer, U Khin Myint selected thee-htat-yin variety for 3 acres of pilot production.
U Khin Myint said, “As for me, there will have no complaints about the techniques provided by Radanar Ayar. And I understand well about the benefit of hand transplantation not by the words but in practical. Apart from this, there are limitations to expand the areas of hand transplantation as most of the farms are in deep water field. So, I want to expand the season; meaning want to try to cultivate in summer. Then, I tested it in previous summer (2013) and I had some mistakes as I chose the improper variety. In this summer (2014), I will choose thee-htat-yin and try to cultivate earlier. If this can be achieved, I will increase the summer cropping acres in upcoming seasons”.
More than being a farmer, U Khin Myint is also an active member of farmer pool in the village.Apart from the responsibilities of Treasurer in his farmer pool, he also arranges the revolving system of farming machine (thresher) supported by Radanar Ayar. In addition to this, with the great effort of U Khin Myint, the farmer pool of Ka Ma Ka Lu Village could mobilize the village to emerge a hand transplant group consists of 16 members.
“For hand transplanting and roughing, which are the critical parts in seed production or improving the yield and quality of crop, I always try to mobilize the other farmers to practice. As possible, I always visit to the farms to monitor how they are doing. There are about 70 farmers in our village and half of them start to practice hand transplanting at least one acre up to 10 acres per farmer. Although we can hire hand transplant group from other areas, now we have a hand transplant group in our village and hope to solve the labor difficulty for some extent” said by U Khin Myint.
U Myo Zaw; 35-years-old; Farmer;Seed Producer;Secretary of Farmer Pool
U Myo Zaw is the secretary of farmer pool from OkeKyut Village. He is not only an active member of farmer pool, but also a farmer who is able to monitor the cropping situation of other farmers continuously. He is producing certified seeds of Paw-Hsan-Hmwayin collaborating with Radanar Ayar since 2012 Monsoon production season and he practices systematic hand transplantation technique. For his famer pool, he takes part as an important role: taking meeting minutes, keeping the documents of working with the project (includes contracts, grant provision notes and input distribution) and even has to manage to revolve the farming machine (thresher).
As a Seed Producer, U Myo Zaw follows the good practices of Radanar Ayar: use the method of salt-water seed selection, hand transplantation, systematic fertilizer application, full time roughing (3 times), in-time harvesting, threshing and drying processes. Then the yield of Paw-Hsan-Hmway increases up to 65 baskets per acre in 2013 Monsoon (normally 40 baskets per acre for broadcasted or fork transplantation). However, he didn’t sell to outside the village as he aims the other farmers from his village to use the quality seeds.
Since 2012 when U Myo Zaw collaborated with the project for seed production, he continues the practice of hand transplantation and increases his acres of hand transplantation annually. “Starting from previous monsoon , I started to adopt hand transplantation in 7 acres (out of total 17 acres). In this monsoon , hand transplantation acres were increased up to 10 acres as the yields from hand-transplanted farms are improved significantly” said by U Myo Zaw.And he continues,“because of increased income, I can provide my son with tuition and my spouse can now participate in (village) social affairs. As an instance, when one of our relatives was admitted to hospital, we could visit there with some presents”.
However, there are still constraints for practicing hand transplantation in all acres because of the geographical situation. He Said, “Our soil situation is degraded season after season and the practice of hand transplantation is the only situation for improving yield. However,not all the farms are in favorable condition as those are situated in deep-water field”.
U Myo Zaw is a farmer not only focuses on his own farms but also on the whole village’s farms. He regularly visited to other farms for convincing to adopt improved technologies. Sometimes, he voluntarily helps other farmers. As an example, he visited to the neighbor’s farm and advice how to conduct hand transplantation systematically. Then he demonstrates how hand transplantation can be done systematically at that field. Similarly, in time of roughing, he helped the other farmers to remove off-type plants manually.As another instance; during the visit of FAATU to OkeKyut Village, U Zaw Myo reported the case of suspected disease in non-project collaborated farm. And FAATU visited to the reported farm and inspected the fungal disease in the rice field.Then the required technical advices could be provided to the farmer for harvesting in-time, threshing in-time and keeping separately as it could spread to other farms and other seeds.
Daw Aye Kyaing; 40-years-old; Women-Headed Household;
Farmer; Seed Producer; Member of Farmer Pool
“I realized that leveling the farmland is the very first step for increasing the yield. Then, I ordered a leveler from Kyeik-Lat Township for leveling my farm”, said by Daw Aye Kyaing, a seed producer from ZaYatHla Village. She became a bread maker for her family since 8 years ago when her father died.Although she had to face many difficulties formerly, now she can lead the farming well. She started to collaborate with SEED Project of RadanarAyar since 2012 Monsoon and practice the improved techniques consistently.
In 2012 Monsoon, hand-transplanted Paw-Hsan-Hmway farm of Daw Aye Kyaing yielded 50 baskets per acre which is 10 baskets more than normal average yield. However, those seeds were not certified as seeds because of off-type containment. In 2013 monsoon, the yield of the same variety increased up to 60 baskets per acre and the seeds also meet its qualification. Apart from adopting agriculture techniques supported by the project, she also makes efforts to proper land preparation where the leveling of the farmland is the very first process of production. Season by season, she tried to prepare all the farms of her own (15 acres) and now (in 2014 summer), the surface of all farms become horizontal.
Previously (before collaboration with RadanarAyar), broadcasting is the only way for the farmers including Daw Aye Kyaing in summer crop production. Daw Aye Kyaing said, “Broadcasting was the most appropriate way of cultivating in summer crop. It uses large amount of seed and fertilizers for an acre. After introduction of seeder from RadanarAyar, it becomes a relevant substituent for cost cutting and improving the yield. Even in seeder application, land preparation for leveling the farm is critical”. Although Daw Aye Kyaing used the seeder provided by RadanarAyar in summer 2013 through farmer pool of ZaYatHla, she purchased a drum seeder for her own used.
Daw Aye Kyaing is a farmer who has willingness to adopt the improved agricultural techniques those she received. Not only in land preparation, hand transplantation and fertilizer application but also in making compost. In October 2013, she participated in exchange visit to Nay PyiDaw and she had to learn how to make the compost. When she gets back to her village after exchange visit, she imitate the techniques at her farm for producing bio-compost by using lime, carbonized rice husk, cow’s dung, decayed straw and so on. The produced compost will be used in 2014 Monsoon production.
Aside from production, she also actively participates as a member in farmer pool of ZaYatHla Village where she takes part in meeting invitation, fund collection and assisting the new farmers technically. And she becomes a technical leader in her village by both self-practicing and distributing to others. As a woman heading a household, she is trying for her family at her best and also leading the other farmers from the village to raise the socio-economic situations. She said, “I will continue the good practices consistently for keeping better outcomes in production. Similarly, if the other farmers follow those good practices, our village will develop faster and faster. That’s why I’m assisting in distributing the agriculture knowledge and practices to the farmers as much as I can”.
Annual Report 2014 Contributed by: Thant ZinAung
U Win Soe is one of the seed grower of Radanar Ayar from Kaing Taw (e) Village. Also, he is a member of farmer pool as a leader.
In Kaing Taw (e) village, one of the project villages of Radanar Ayar, there is also a farmer pool which is led by U Win Soe. And He was participated in Radanar Ayar not only the farmer pool leader but also a seed grower in 2012 Monsoon seed production. In this village, there have 14 farmers who are working with Radanar Ayar for seed and quality crop production in 2012 Monsoon crop season. Previously, all the farmer in this village have practice of crop plantation using stick and broadcasting that, “ Crop plantation using stick and broadcasting are traditionally of the main practices for us in our village because of the water level and lack of techniques. These practices need more seeds to overcome the crop waste due to water. And sometime, it usually hurt the nursery as it deepens to the soil for some extent. ”
After Monsoon crop season, he said that, “The farmers thought that plantation using stick is the best, however, we start to know the benefit of proper seed-bed preparation and hand transplanting which is supported by Radanar Ayar. Although seed-bed preparation is a challenge for our farmers what it is a new method for us, but we did the seed-bed preparation successfully and we are transplanted about 50 acres of cropping field by hand. Now, we have many benefits the transplanting of seed production and we are selling the paddy seeds to Radanar Ayar ‘s Central Seed Bank and other farmers as a seed price.”
U Win Soe said that the potential achievement because of the techniques supported by Radanar Ayar that all of the farmers will follow the good practices of proper seed-bed preparation and hand transplanting once the farmer get achieved. “If the farmers believe that the yield per acre of the rice production will increase in upcoming crop season that grow the crop with hand transplantation and it is sure that the number of farmers will use these techniques more and more. As an instance, U Soe Htike, one of the contact farmers of Radanar Ayar, used the supported of Yadana Toe variety with hand transplanting method and he is also selling Radanar Ayar ‘s Central Seed Bank and other farmers as a seed.”
Case Study of Farmer Pool / Nga Pi Tone Hle Village on the effectiveness of the socio-economic condition supported by Radanar Ayar Association