CHALLENGES IN DEVELOPING PESTICIDE-FREE AND ORGANIC VEGETABLE MARKETS AND FARMING SYSTEMS FOR SMALLHOLDER FARMERS IN NORTH THAILAND
The area of organically managed land in Thailand is estimated to be 14,000 hectares. The main driving force for organic conversion comes from local farmers and NGOs collectively creating a new social movement for the transformation from chemically-based farming practices to more sustainable and natural resource management. Despite many cases of success for pesticide-free and organic farming practices, the integrated development of production and marketing systems for smallholder farmers is less progressive. This paper presents development pathways for pesticide-free and organic vegetable farming in northern Thailand. This analysis is supported by case studies from the Multiple Cropping Centers experience with peri-urban farmers in Chiang Mai province. Recent Government policy on sustainable agriculture and organic agriculture favours the promotion and expansion of organic agriculture in Thailand. A more indirect incentive emanates from the Ministry of Public Health campaign on Health for All. This emphasises the adverse impact on health from the heavy use of agricultural chemicals and the consumption of lower pesticide foods. In northern Thailand, a number of key institutions promote pesticide-free and organic vegetable farming systems. The challenges in transforming chemically-based to pesticide-free vegetable production in the peri-urban areas have highlighted the value of integrative approaches through the participation of various stakeholders.
Kramol, P., Thong-ngam, K., Gypmantasiri, P. and Davies, W.P. (2006). CHALLENGES IN DEVELOPING PESTICIDE-FREE AND ORGANIC VEGETABLE MARKETS AND FARMING SYSTEMS FOR SMALLHOLDER FARMERS IN NORTH THAILAND. Acta Hortic. 699, 243-252