Catching Fish In The Rice Fields And Muddy Soil
The traditional Asian practice of raising fish in rice paddies is making a comeback in the lush rice fields of West Java, Indonesia and Thailand. The technique of rice – fish farming is the simultaneous production of fish and rice in the same flooded fields. The 2000 – year old system was abandoned by many countries because of the “green revolution”‘s prescriptions of high – yielding, mono-culture rice varieties that required the use of pesticides and fertilizers, and double – and triple – cropping of rice. Although productive, these practices reduce soil fertility and are expensive for farmers to maintain. The rice – fish project, supported by IDRC, is the work of Dr Achmad Fagi, a food crop scientist in West Java, Indonesia and Niran Tongpan of the Farming Systems Research Institute in Bangkok, Thailand, who collaborate with Canadian researchers. The project fits well with IDRC’s goal of sustainable development.