During our visit to Chiang Mai, we had the opportunity to visit Monkey Organic Farm and it sure was an interesting experience for our team.
Khun Santhi, who is one of the founders of Monkey Organic Farm, showed us around and walk us through the entire process from the nursery to their production line. Every single step that is being carried out on the farm is properly managed and maintained to the standards of Organic Farming practices and they have been upholding their principles since 2012.
Besides their self-sustainable production, they also carry out weekly delivery on the weekends to many notable supermarket chains like Tops, Rimping across Chiang Mai and Bangkok.
So today, we would like to share more about what we have spoken about with Khun Santhi on the future of Organic Farming in Thailand and of course an introduction of Monkey Organic Farm.
Q: Why are you an Organic Farmer?
It’s just a passion, we would like to bring light to the future of Organic Vegetables. Even though it is tough being an Organic Farmer but when we have more people growing Organic, this could become the future.
Q: What do you want to share with the people about Organic Farming?
In the long run, we would like to have a community of Organic Farmers working together, acquiring knowledge from each other and bring the products (crops) to the market together. And of course, if they (other farmers) would like to have some key learnings, examples to learn from.. we can always support them.
Q: In your opinion, what is the future of Organic Farming?
The healthy trend of the consumer is already here, even though they are still some portion of people that do not understand the difference between chemical and non-chemically grown vegetables. But most importantly, we have to capture the trend right now and move forward together.
Q: What are the challenges you face as an Organic Farmer?
There are a few things that are indeed a challenge for us, the work quality of the worker, knowledge of being an Organic Farmer as we have to continuously progress and learn new things every day, the weather is difficult to forecast and as well as the fluctuations of the seasons. Thus it is essential that we have to monitor and apply our knowledge accordingly as the year passes.
Q: What are the kinds of delivery transports you use to send your products?
Though we have our own cold-chain transport, in Chiang Mai we manage the delivery ourselves using a four-wheel truck whereas, for Bangkok, we usually engage a logistic company to expedite the delivery.
Q: How does the Community in your area respond to you being an Organic Farm?
The people that live on the farm around mine is supportive of us being Organic, however, they lack the knowledge and budget to convert or to grow organically. Hence, it is important to have a strong community to support us, help with the budgeting and hopefully we will be able to bring the products to the market on our own.
After that day, we thought about 2 key points that we think many of the other small-medium farms can learn from.
#1 Keep learning and want to improve every single day.
Out there in the fields, nature is a good teacher for almost everything in life. What Khun Santhi has mentioned is to always test it out, be patient and even if the results don’t come out the way you expected. Keep trying!
#2 Gather the people around your farm
If you feel like you are not up to doing the farm alone, why not gather the people that are interested to build a community. This way, you won’t have to feel like you are by yourself and you can share knowledge and experiments with each other at your weekly get-together.
With that, we shall end it off with the short video clip that we have made. Sorry that it took a little longer than expected due to the Lunar New Year season in Singapore. If you have any feedback or suggestions, we are always happy to hear from you!