Siem Reap, Battambang, November2nd to 4th: Cambodia Conservation Agriculture and Sustainable Intensification Consortium (CASIC) organizes its 3rd Annual Regional workshop on “Regenerative Agriculture through Agroecology, Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization, Bio sequestration, and Water Management.”
The establishment of the Cambodia Conservation Agriculture and Sustainable Intensification Consortium (CASIC)initiated in August 2018 was formally approved by HE Veng Sakhon, Former Minister of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) on 21stMay 2020. This decision was a turning point to foster the dissemination of conservation agriculture and sustainable intensification practices to restore and preserve agricultural soils in Cambodia, advancing in farm sustainability and contributing to climate change mitigation and adaptation.
CASIC organized its first Regional Training on Appropriate Scale Mechanization for Conservation Agriculture in2019 in Siem Reap and Bos Khnor, Cambodia. Due to COVID, CASIC could not hold any workshop in 2020. However, in 2021 CASIC was able to organize the 2ndannual regional workshop (on-line) successfully.
Due to the successful effort of the Royal Government of Cambodia in handling Covid-19, the CASIC 3rd Annual Regional Workshop on Regenerative Agriculture through Agroecology, Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization, Bio sequestration, and Water Management is organized, with the objectives to provide updates on country policies that promote agroecology, present successes and challenges that cover different dimensions of agroecology including R4D, Human Resources Development, Extension, Technologies and services, transition financing, showcase new prototypes that are ready for commercial application, identify new challenges and opportunities through stakeholder consultations and hold a discussion on any regional efforts needed.
“Through various activities with relevant partners, CASIC is actively involved and is paying more attention to climate change as it has posed as one of the most severe challenges to human beings, causing tremendous impacts on agricultural production such as floods, droughts, soil erosion, and agricultural land degradation resulting in the shrinking cultivation period. Therefore, in this regional workshop, we could work together to share experiences and find out an integral part and effective approaches to regenerative agriculture through Agroecology, Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization, Bio Sequestration, and Water Management.”
Said H.E. Dr. Chan Saruth, Under Secretary of State of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, andFisheries and Chairman of CASIC Executive Board
This is an opportune time for participants fromAsia and the Pacific to have the opportunity to come together and shareexperiences through Agroecology, Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization, Biosequestration, and Water Management in the region. We need to worktogether to address food systems transformations in the region now and in thefuture.
“In theAsia Pacific region, the agriculture sector is suffering from severe challengesincreasing its vulnerability to climate change further…Conservation Agricultureand Regenerative Agriculture are valuable approaches to sustainableintensification that can help the agricultural sector in Asia-Pacific region insoil health, cope with climate impacts and enable the transition to trajectoryto low carbon growth.”
Said Dr.Li Yutong, Head, Centre for Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization (ESCAP-CSAM)
The workshop will host multiple sessions to better understand the CA/SI landscape in the region including CASIC’s progress and updates followed by a presentation from Dr. Florent Tivet and Rajiv Pradhan on the Institutional Systems for mechanization and other areas of CA/SI & Agroecology.
The workshop will also include presentations from countries including Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Laos, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Thailand, Uzbekistan and Vietnam on topics such as: mechanisms to enable coordination/policies, research for development, CA/SI and agroecology in the formal education system, extension to promote agroecology, supporting functions to scale CA/SI & agroecology, transition financing to show progress of Dei Meas (a pilot that is being undertaken in Cambodia incentivizing farmers for a change of practices through agroecology) followed by a session on Regional Alliance for FAO to inform on the formation of a regional alliance on Conservation Agriculture will also be conducted. A discussion with a Regional Action Plan will conclude the activities for the first day.
On the second day, the Provincial Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries will present the progress of the Research for Development work and support to extension showcasing the machinery and cover crops that are in use for CA/SI. The workshop will conclude with a visit to farmers practicing CA and commercial farm plot under CA to showcase how MetKasekor works in the field and their engagement through Dei Meas.
“I take encouragement from these meetings: there is a recognition that CASIC, the ministries, institutions, development partners and private sectors are pulling in the same direction and are cooperating closely. I am encouraged that we all agree, have a policy framework, and despite all the problems and challenges in the world, we are making progress. For its part, the MAFF and CASIC is fully committed to participate in any process.”
Said H.E Dr. Yoeu Asikin, Undersecretary of State of Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries in her closing remarks.
The 3-day workshop was attended over 80 participants from 11 countries from the Asia-Pacific region. Based on the recommended report from the 2nd annual regional workshop, the sessions included subjects covering successful cases and good practices of government coordination body and enabling policy of each country within the region, research for development, adoption of formal education system, dissemination of knowledge through institutional extension model, private sector involvement and transitional financing for CA/SI and agroecology.