Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Rubber proves pick of crop

Rubber proves pick of crop

Rubber proves pick of crop

110311_hbn03d

Pork Brunly, a small-scale rubber farmer, examines a rubber tree on his farm in Sampeay, 13 kilometres from Stung Treng.

IT’S hard to imagine as we bump along the road towards his farm, but Pork Brunly is part of the new breed of Cambodian entrepreneurs.  In 2007, the farmer bought 60 hectares of land in the village of Sampeay, 13 kilometres from Stung Treng, to grow rubber trees.

“Rubber fetches a very good price,” he says. “It is part of the strategic plan.”

Pork Brunly certainly knows his business. According to Governor Loy Sophat, rubber will play a very important role in the future of Stung Treng. The provincial government has allocated 40,000 hectares of land to the cash crop. About 10,000 hectares have been planted to date, with a further 10,000 hectares scheduled for the next five years. Most of this land has been allocated to commercial rubber companies, but a small amount has been set aside for family rubber plantation owners such as Pork Brunly.

Before turning to rubber, Pork Brunly used to grow cashew trees in neighbouring Ratanakkiri. He sold half of that plantation to raise the capital for his new venture. “Rubber is better business than cashew nuts,” he says.

Since then he has raised capital from ACLEDA Bank. He first borrowed US$10,000 in 2009 and then $32,000 last year, using this money to hire workers to clear the land and plant saplings, which should mature in 2013.

In the meantime, Pork Brunly grows cassava and soya bean. “Cassava is very good business this year,” he says.

Although he can already pay back his loan, Pork Brunly chooses not to, preferring to maintain a good cash flow to enable him to sell crops at the peak of the market.

“ACLEDA is very good because when we lack capital, I can get money,” he says. Not that Pork Brunly is worried about lack of capital. He is even contemplating taking out a further loan to build a small rubber processing plant. TRANSLATION BY RANN REUY

MOST VIEWED

  • Angkor Wat named as the top landmark for the second year

    Travel website TripAdvisor has named Cambodia’s ancient wonder Angkor Wat as the top landmark in the world for the second year running in their Travelers’ Choice Award 2018, an achievement Cambodian tourism operators expect will attract more tourists to the Kingdom. The website uses traveller

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty

  • Hun Sen detractors ‘will die’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday said those who curse or insult him would eventually die without a plot of land to bury their bodies after being killed by lightning, suffering the same fate as those who recently died in Thmar Baing district in Koh

  • Ministry’s plan for net sparks fears

    The government has ordered all domestic and international internet traffic in the Kingdom to pass through a Data Management Centre (DMC) that has been newly created by the state-owned Telecom Cambodia, in a move some have claimed is an attempt to censor government critics. Spokesman