Private orchid growers and businesses have pledged to work with the Ministry of Environment on the preservation of wild orchid species.

The commitment was made during a discussion among private sector representatives, researchers and ministry officials on January 28.

Held under the theme "The participation of the private sector on the management of wild orchids in Cambodia", the meeting was led by ministry undersecretary of state Chan Somaly, who is in charge of the ministry's orchid centre, and attended by a total of 27 people including students, researchers and representatives from orchid plantations and private companies.

The ministry said the meeting was held to exchange views on the protection and preservation of wild orchids and how the private sector can contribute.

"We exchanged important information on wild orchids in Cambodia, in areas such as general care and propagation using tissue culture methods. Participants pledged to support and provide orchids to Sok An Phnom Kulen Centre for Orchid Research and Conservation,” the ministry said.

A wild orchid Garden in Siem Reap province’s Banteay Srei district in 2020. ENVIRONMENT MINISTRY

Staff at the centre will prepare a list of prioritised orchid species for perseveration. The list will provide information and data on each one.

The ministry had banned the trading of wild orchids to prevent the plants disappearing from the forest. The ministry said there are more than 500 types of wild orchid in Cambodia, with more than 360 kinds categorised. Some face elevated levels of extinction risk.

There are more than 200 types of wild orchid that are under preservation at the Sok An Phnom Kulen centre, it said.

The ministry said that most orchids on sale today are hybrids.