Cambodia Invests USD3.5m in Potato Seeds Project
Cambodia’s Minister of Agriculture Veng Sakhon has told local media that his ministry plans to purchase USD3.5m worth of potato seeds, in a project partnering with South Korea, to produce potatoes in the Mondulkiri province.
He said that when the COVID-19 pandemic ends, the planting of the potato seeds will start, adding that Mondulkiri is a good location for growing potatoes, as it has a favorable climate, strong soil and a good water infrastructure system.
“The successful production of potatoes in Cambodia will reduce the need to import the vegetable from neighboring countries, which is currently at 5,000 tons per year,” Veng added.
Potato growing was piloted in the Mondulkiri province last year and produced good yields of 18 tons per hectare, thus allowing farmers to earn from USD15,000 to USD17,000 per a three-month growing season.
Earlier this month, the Royal University of Agriculture announced that they had shortlisted five potato varieties for plantation in Mondulkiri, selecting varieties for their ability to generate high yields and be resilient to future climate change in the region. The selected varieties of potatoes were the “Tornado”, a crop imported from Ireland, “Madeira” and “Coronada”, varieties from Germany and the “PO3” and “PO7”, both from neighboring Vietnam.
Farmers will also need to learn special techniques to store the potato, to keep a future supply for replanting in the next season.