Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Cows die en masse at Ratanakkiri plantation

Cows die en masse at Ratanakkiri plantation

A cow lies in the back of trailer in Ratanakkiri this week after it died from suspected food poison. Adhoc
A cow lies in the back of trailer in Ratanakkiri this week after it died from suspected food poison. Adhoc

Cows die en masse at Ratanakkiri plantation

A least 50 cows have died at a Vietnamese plantation in Ratanakkiri over the past several weeks, with some officials blaming food poisoning.

The cattle came from Vietnam and belonged to Hoang Anh Andong Meas, a subsidiary of Vietnamese agricultural firm Hoang Anh Gia Lai.

Authorities, experts and locals had different estimates of the death toll. Provincial agriculture director Soy Sona said that only 50 had died, while Phan Bel, a nearby village chief said that at least 80 had died. Local villagers put the number above 300.

“The animals ate palm oil food and they died from poisoning. We don’t know whether the palm oil was sprayed with [chemical] substances,” said Sona, adding that the cows had been burned.

However, a villager speaking on condition of anonymity said he witnessed the carcasses brought out of the company to be sold.

“I saw them transporting dead cows but we were unable to stop it,” confirmed Sre Angkrang commune chief Chhim Sokhim. Traders bought some of the carcasses, he said.

Some local villagers’ cows died during this period as well, from food and water shortages stemming from the drought. But villagers said the plantation had plenty of feed and water.

Hoang Anh Gia Lai director Nguyen Van Thu could not be reached for comment. His assistant said that he was unaware of the deaths.

MOST VIEWED

  • US think tank warns of China's 'ulterior motives'

    A US think tank on Tuesday warned that spreading Chinese investment in the Indo-Pacific follows a pattern of leveraging geopolitical influence at the expense of the nations receiving investment, including Cambodia. The report looks at a sample of 15 Chinese port development projects, noting that the

  • More than three tonnes of ivory reportedly bound for Cambodia seized in Mozambique

    A total of 3.5 tonnes of ivory reportedly bound for Cambodia was seized by authorities in Mozambique late last week, according to the NGO Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). CITES' information was based on a report from the

  • Defence Ministry denies weapons in smuggling case came from Cambodia

    After a Thai national was arrested last week for allegedly smuggling guns from Cambodia to Thailand, Cambodia's Defence Ministry has claimed the weapons seized during the arrest are not used in Cambodia, despite the fact that both types of rifle seized are commonly found in

  • Shipwreck found off coast of Koh Kong

    Royal Cambodian Navy researchers are working to identify a decades-old shipwreck found earlier this month off the coast of Koh Kong province. Divers found the 70-metre-long wreck on April 4 about a mile from Koh Chhlam island, according to Navy officials. Deputy Navy Commander Tea Sokha,