In Koh Nhek District, Mondulkiri Province, under the organic rice project of Amru Rice, the organic paddy sample, has been collected directly from rice fields for inspection on the organic quality standard in the lab test, for getting the certification of organic rice standard. The varieties of these organic rice are Pka Rumdoul, Red Jasmine, and premium white rice (Neang Ok, Neang Om), which have been planted by 6 Agricultural Cooperatives (AC), contracted with Amru Rice in the recent September 2020.
The 6 ACs in Koh Nhek district, Mondulkiri province, are contracted to supply organic rice to Amru Rice Company, have a total of 144 members, with the rice cultivation area of 791 hectares, and the expected yield will be 2,375 tons. The 6 ACs are Koh Nhek Organic Crop AC, Meanchey Development AC, Samaki Prosperity AC, Koh Nhek Agricultural AC, Mean Rith Rong Roeung AC, Samaki Phum Toul AC.
According to Mr. Korng Khoeurng, the Sustainable Rice Platform (SRP) and Contract Farming Manager of Amru Rice, farmers in the 6 ACs will get 100 riels per 1 kilogram of organic paddy as the extra incentive, accounted for higher income than the normal paddy production.
The Organic rice project of Amru Rice is one of the projects under the Rice TechCambodia (RTC). Rice TechCambodia (RTC) is a public-private initiative with the aim to enhance the organic rice value chain in Cambodia leading to inclusive growth for small scale rice farmers. The partners involved in Rice TechCambodia include Sano Rice, Amru Rice, and Oxfam in Cambodia, Development and Partnership in Action (DPA), Larive International, and the Provincial Department of Agriculture of Mondulkiri. This project is getting support in the grant from the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (NEA) under the framework of “Social Development Goals Partnership Facility” (SDGP).
The Organic Standards are based on EOS/EU and NOP Standards. The inspection of standards is from both external and internal. To get the external inspection, the AC first has to conduct internal inspections which are done by an internal inspector. There are two internal inspections that first inspection during land preparation or rice transplanting.
Recently, after a month of organic paddy planting, Amru Rice has collected the sample of organic paddies from the rice fields for the internal inspection of organic standard from the independence inspection company or so-called the third party (International Control System), the Control Union Company, to evaluate in Lab Test before certified as organic paddy followed by the EOS/ EU and NOP standard.
The Objective of inspection is to control the implementation of the AC’s member on Pest and Disease, herbicide input application, water irrigation or water flow, yield estimation, rice storage, transportation, rice drying, traceability system, rice packing material, and procurement of rice paddy selling-buying. All input and material use and activities have to comply with the internal rule and organic standard of EOS/EU and NOP Standard. By benefiting the farmers’ livelihood, AMRU has quite a good reputation by having more and more farmers to join the supply chain. In 2020, there’re 10000 farmers joining AMRU in 2 categories, the organic rice around 6000 farmers, and the sustainable rice platform about 4000 farmers, this is a significant growth as first start the project in 2014, there were only 100 farmers.