Supported by: GRET
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Ms. Pann Chinda is 40 years old. She lives in Chrey Cheung village, Keansangke commune, Sotr Nikum district, Siem Reap province. She is a poor family which is recognized by the government. Last few years she grew vegetable only on tables because the plot is always flooded in rainy season. Even though the garden is very near to her house, she used pesticide to control insects and diseases. And, to improve crop growth she used chemical fertilizer and also cow dunk and cow urine. Anyway, everything gradually changes since she has joined with APICI project in 2012. With APICI project she receives technical support, materials and other agricultural tools (micro-irrigation system, including a family pond). Besides these support, she also joins many training courses and exchange visit. Recently, she went to visit Agro-ecological farmers in India with project team. All awareness of bad impact of chemical use in crop cultivation causes her to change her thinking from conventional view to be more in agro-ecological way. The important reasons of this transition are health concern and production costs. Now she mainly uses compost as fertilizer to improve soil quality and crop growth, and avoiding any chemical fertilizers. To prevent and control insects and diseases, she applies cultivation methods such as crop rotation, intercropping and crop association. She also uses bio-pesticides which is made by local materials. Once she applies these techniques, soil quality has improved. It changes from sandy soil to a better soil structure with appearance of organic matters. Especially, production cost has reduced notably because she doesn’t use any chemical inputs anymore, instead, she uses compost and bio-pesticide which is made by available local materials, normally these materials are free or can find easily around house or in rice field.