Stephen Leinau was in Malaysia for the SEA Rice Conference and in Thailand for two workshops, one of which was on developing equipment for small rice farmers. Thanks to SRI Global for these pictures and all their work along with SRI-Rice (SRI International Network and Resources Center) and Oxfam.
A special 3 day workshop on SRI Equipment was held post conference at the Asian Centre of Innovation for Sustainable Agriculture Intensification (ACISAI) at the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT), Pathumthani, Thailand. Earth Links had a chance to do a presentation on Computer Aided Design of SRI equipment as well as facilitate several working groups focused on prioritizing the equipment needs of small to medium sized rice farmers. The groups were in agreement that new, inexpensive, locally constructed, small motorized equipment with 50cc to 500cc engines would allow farmers to deal with community food security, labor shortages and the need to raise farmers’ incomes. It was very interesting to have so many participates from around the world sharing their needs needs for equipment development. Thanks to AIT and all their student staff for their hospitality services and audio visual facilitation.
Stephen was invited to attend the SOUTHEAST ASIAN (SEA) REGIONAL SRI CONFERENCE held in Kedah, Malaysia in May, 2015 and to give a presentation on “Support for SRI Mechanization and Equipment”. This regional meeting for Asia was a chance to discuss strategies to better support and expand SRI rice rice growing techniques in Asian countries as well as supporting small scale farming, consumer health and farmer market networks. The conference was very well organized and attended and will hopefully serve as a model of regional organization worldwide.
Earth Links hosted a special dinner and presentations for 40 people people who are developing new equipment for SRI rice transplanting, weeding and harvesting. We would like to especially thank Dr. Anizan Isahak and her staff for all their work and good care.
For more information on the conference, please visit: http://www.seacouncil.org/seacon/