28 May New production methods raise pig farming profits – Thailand
- Limited pollution
- Insecticide-free vegetables
- Organic pork
Although pork is a culinary mainstay in Thailand, rising production costs, concerns about the impact pig farming has on the land and swine epidemics have caused many farmers in Thailand to suffer financially and many have ceased pig breeding entirely. The Enactus team from Thammasat University recognized that with some economic and environmentally friendly changes, profitability could be restored to raising pigs, particularly to smaller family-run pig farms.
The team targeted Ponglan, a village less than 100 kilometers from the University that contained several households that raise pigs as their main incomes. To help these farmers have a more hygienic pig production as well as pork that is healthier to consume, the team raised $3,500 to convert the operations to organic farming. This included switching to all-natural feed, eliminating the use of antibiotics, hormones and animal products, and applying a biogas system that captures methane gas from pig waste and converts it into electricity. They showed the farmers how to use the remaining waste to boost the quality of their soil and grow vegetables. With new and more appealing products, the team made arrangements for the farmers to sell their organic pork and insecticide-free vegetables at a local market.
For the first time in years these farmers are making sustainable incomes. And due to the “Ponglan Pork” project, most have been able to expand their operations, all of this while using fewer resources and utilizing better technologies. Just as important, these methods are limiting pollution to the local environment. The village economy is strong and the community harmony is restored due to better overall swine production.