27 November 2022: The Centre for Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization (CSAM) of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) successfully organized a ‘Study Tour on Mechanization Solutions for Integrated Straw Management in Thailand’ under its project ‘Enabling sustainable and climate-smart agriculture in Cambodia, Indonesia and Nepal through mechanization solutions for integrated management of straw residue and air pollution monitoring’ from 21 to 27 November 2022 in Bangkok and Chainat Province, Thailand. The project is financially supported by the China-ESCAP Cooperation Programme.
The project has established pilot sites in Cambodia, Indonesia and Nepal for testing, adapting and demonstrating mechanization-based solutions for integrated management of straw residue and strengthening stakeholder capacities. Twelve participants, comprising of pilot teams from the three countries travelled across Bangkok and Chainat Province to explore mechanization-based solutions for rice production and straw management in Thailand.
Thailand is an important producer of rice and has extensive experience in dealing with rice straw residue. During six days of field visits, the visiting delegations were exposed to the whole process of integrated rice straw management from preparing the land in rows with rice combine harvesters, soil preparation by rotary tillers to mix the stubble, straw decomposition and the application of bio-extract to accelerate the process, ‘Wet and Dry’ field technique to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from rice production, the applications of straw bales as fodder, fertilizer and base material, and straw bale harvesting operations, transportation and storage. These visits demonstrated valuable practices from Thailand and promoted a better understanding of the circular model of straw management using machinery being promoted under CSAM’s regional initiative on integrated straw management.
Overall, the study tour demonstrated good practices and experiences on agricultural machinery-based solutions for integrated straw management in Thailand and promoted knowledge sharing, cross-learning and collaboration among the pilot teams.