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Swiss aid gives $4.6M for farmers

A farmer plucks ripe oranges earlier this year at an orchard in Battambang province.
A farmer plucks ripe oranges earlier this year at an orchard in Battambang province. Heng Chivoan

Swiss aid gives $4.6M for farmers

The Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) yesterday pledged $4.6 million over three years for phase two of an agriculture assistance program that is intended to help small-scale Cambodian farmers in four northern provinces.

The Cambodia Horticulture Advancing Income and Nutrition (Chain) program began in 2014 and trained 6,800 farmers in Preah Vihear, Oddar Meanchey, Stung Treng and Kratie provinces on nutrition, farming techniques, processing and business skills during its first phase of operation, which ended last year.

Phase two, which will begin this month, will focus on improving market access and efficiency for farmers by building partnerships between farmers, traders and other market actors in the four provinces, according to Hem Sovannarith, program manager of agriculture and food security at SDC.

Yan Sopheak, a farmer in Kratie province who was trained by SDC, said yesterday that the Chain program has helped him grow his small-scale farming business.

“Since I became a member, I’ve learned about technical skills to get the high production and increase my income,” he said, adding he had increased his daily wage from about $2.50 to $25 and had more than doubled the size of his farm since the program began.

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