High-tech corn farm inaugurated in Siem Reap

High-tech corn farm inaugurated in Siem Reap

AG Agribusiness Asia (Cambodia) Co., Ltd. and ING Holdings Co., Ltd. have collaborated to launch a state-of-the-art corn farm in Siem Reap province, integrating Australian and other international standard agricultural technology and techniques to drastically improve corn yields in the province compared to traditional farming methods.

Situated in Chea Sman village, Meanchey commune, Prasat Bakong district, Siem Reap province, the approximately 1000-hectare commercial maize farm will produce high-quality corn for feed millers in the ASEAN Region.

The farm is part of the regional Agribusiness Asia Group Co., Ltd., which was established to utilize modern farming technology to improve productivity and profitability in ASEAN-based agriculture ventures.

The project’s inauguration ceremony was held on-site at the farm on March 25, attended by local dignitaries and company representatives, including Prak Sophoan, governor of Siem Reap, Benjamin Bootle, managing director of AG Agribusiness Asia (Cambodia) Co., Ltd., and Ing Siv Khov Akka, director of ING Holdings Co., Ltd.

According to the farm’s managing director, Bootle, an Australian national, the farm will be a year-round producer of maize.

The farm will be using the maize by-products as inputs for biochar which in turn will be returned to the Siem Reap Farm’s soil as a soil amendment improving fertility, water retention and raising soil pH levels.

Bootle, during the inauguration ceremony, also emphasized the adoption of precision farming techniques in the venture to raise yield size and quality, including advanced irrigation systems and innovative water treatment methods to be implemented on the farm.

For example, the farm integrates ‘centre pivot’ irrigation systems and intensive irrigation infrastructure widely used in high-production crop markets such as Australia, New Zealand and the US to ensure ample year-round irrigation and maximize yields.

Alongside the modern methods, Bootle highlighted the farm’s focus on sustainable agricultural practices and reiterated his company’s commitment, along with investment partners, to introducing smart agriculture practices nationwide in the Kingdom.

The implementation of advanced agricultural technology in Cambodia can boost productivity while limiting any harmful environmental impacts, he noted.

Bootle said in future the Siem Reap farm will aim to diversify crop cultivation beyond corn to include cotton, soybeans, grains, and high-yield rice.

Ing Siv Khov, Director, ING Holdings Co., Ltd., celebrated the collaborative efforts of all stakeholders in realizing the ambitious corn farm project.

He noted that the farm’s unique integration of cutting-edge agricultural technology will provide a new standard to enhance the competitiveness of Siem Reap’s agricultural landscape and elevate the success of the sector in future.

The newly inaugurated corn farm in Siem Reap is part of an ongoing drive towards developing Cambodia’s agriculture sector towards greater production and profits.

In a recent interview with Khmer Times, Lawrence Lennon, managing director of Phnom Penh-based real estate investment firm, CBRE Cambodia, said that while the post-pandemic period has proven challenging for traditionally strong areas of Cambodia’s economy, such as manufacturing, construction and tourism, the agriculture sector has continued to show forward momentum.

“Given agriculture practices remain largely underdeveloped in Cambodia, the economy has the ability to force diversification towards agroindustry,” said Lennon.

New ventures able to improve production capacity will increase the overall value of the agribusiness sector, plus reduce the trade deficit at the same time, he said.

“We should therefore expect to see agriculture be the primary catalyst for economic growth moving forward,” said Lennon. Khmertimeskh

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