In the heart of sustainable agriculture, Green Net Cooperative (GNC) sows the seeds of change. For years, the organization has been partnering with its dedicated producers to find appropriate farm practices that not only yield prosperity but also foster environmental sustainability. This is done in order to capture and store carbon in the soil, known as soil organic carbon. Through cultivating cover crops like green manure and integrating the transformative power of biochar into the earth, GNC not only achieves carbon sequestration but also nurtures the soil’s vitality.

Hence, Fairtrade NAPP has organized a climate change mitigation project to reach out to all GNC members including rice, coconut, and cashew nut farmers to up-scale the climate mitigation efforts through soil carbon sequestration. The objective of the project is to increase soil organic carbon in farmer members’ fields through:

  1. Having access to organic legume seed for green manure.
  2. producing high quality biochar from locally available organic materials.

This climate change mitigation project through soil carbon sequestration has impacted 373 farmer members. The organization embarked on a strategic initiative regarding green manure seeds. The initial step involved a comprehensive outreach to members and cataloguing the limited availability of green manure seeds among the members such as green gram, jack-bean, and sunn hemp. After initial assessment and collection of samples, a germination test was conducted that revealed an impressive rate good germination rate exceeding 90% for all samples. Recognizing the scarcity, GNC implemented a thoughtful distribution plan by allocating 2-3 kg of seeds to each farmer upon the delivery of rice paddy to the collection centers in early December 2023. Simultaneously, GNC organized seven training-meetings that engaged 99 rice farmers in Yasothorn and Mahasarakham provinces. The discussions of this session ranged from year-end progress to cultivating green beans as part of crop rotation. Notably, 58 farmers, covering 194 rai (approximately 31.04 hectares), expressed keen interest in cultivating green beans. As a testament to GNC’s community-centric approach, farmers receiving the seeds are expected to reciprocate by returning an equivalent amount in order to continue a sustainable cycle for GNC members in the years to come.

In a strategic move towards sustainable agriculture, Green Net Cooperative (GNC) also acquired 5 biochar kilns across key provinces of its’ member. This includes 3 biochar kilns for producers in Yasothorn and 1 each for producers in Ubon Ratchathanee, Mahasarakham, Lampoon, and Prachuab Kirikan. GNC staff and farmer leaders were subsequently trained in the art of biochar production for locally available materials. The produced biochar is then distributed to farmer members at cost-price. Notably, the fairtrade premium has also been judiciously employed to finance biochar distribution that specifically benefitted disadvantaged producer members facing challenges such as small land holdings or family disabilities.

This initiative enhances knowledge among its farmer members regarding soil improvement techniques. Simultaneously, the program gently raises awareness about the reutilization of organic waste within the farm. This balanced approach aims to enrich agricultural practices and foster sustainability, nurturing a mindful and resilient farming community. Together, let’s upscale climate mitigation efforts through soil carbon sequestration. Join us in nurturing the land, enriching agricultural practices, and fostering a resilient farming community for a sustainable tomorrow.

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