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Updates from AMDA Malino Farm, Indonesia

Publication date:2022-01-19
 
Yuichiro Chikamochi, AMDA Headquarters
 

Shallots are one of the key ingredients
in Indonesian cooking

The year 2022 marks the eighth anniversary for AMDA Malino Farm in Indonesia’s South Sulawesi Province; an organic farm jointly run by AMDA, AMDA Indonesia and local farmers. It was launched in 2014 for the aim of allowing organic agriculture to take root in the greater Southeast Asia region.

“Food is the source of life,” as AMDA President Dr. Suganami put it, the farm has been promoting the importance of healthy food and environment-friendly crop cultivation. In fact, there seems to have been a gradual transition taking place at the Malino farm in which more farmers are going organic as years roll on.


 

A Malino farmer planting mustard greens

While the last two years have been a tough time for every sector due to the extent of the COVID-19 crisis, Hasanuddin University’s Professor Dorothea Agnes Rampisela, an agricultural expert and AMDA partner, says farming and telecommunication industries are the only two fields that have been thriving amid the pandemic.

Although the agricultural sector may seem less affected, the sales of the farm’s red rice have not been as brisk as they used to be. However, the outlook still remains unfazed as it is likely that the stock of rice will be sold out for this fiscal year as well.

As for vegetables, the farmers are constantly adding new crops to their conventional produce. Along with popular ones such as shallots, mustard greens, lettuce, bok choy and eggplants, they have started planting Japanese cucumbers that are slightly different from that of Indonesia.

The agricultural method the Malino farmers apply can be thoroughly organic. Besides making pesticides from natural ingredients, they also make a traditional farming tool called bunre for exterminating rice bugs. Simply put, there is a lot of ingenuity involved in their way of doing things.  

A rice bug

Bunre in the making


Even at the time of harvest, no combine harvester is used. Instead, farmers go out to the paddy fields and harvest the rice by hand. Milling and other steps that follow are also handled manually.


One of the buzz words in the modern-day agriculture may be the so-called smart farming where tech-savvy farmers are introducing clever devices to maximize efficiency. To that extent, the good-old farming in Malino can be as analog as it can get. Given the fact that chemical fertilizers and pesticides have brought about harms instead of boons, what the Malino farm is doing can be a clue to the sustainable future the mankind must pursue.

On a final note, one of the Malino clients is said to have been working on the development of a rice powder-derived face mask. According to Professor Rampisela, the mask is a lot healthier and helps minimize the risk of getting skin rashes when put on.

It may take a while for the viral infections to get contained, but let us stay positive and safe. All this while, let us also hope that the rice mask can hit store shelves sometime soon.
 

    •  Indonesia
    •  2021
    •  2022
    •  Mid-Long Term Project

 
 
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