Rice farming has always been considered the backbone of Thailand’s economy. In the past, buffaloes were heavily involved in the rice farming process and the farmers’ way of life in general. Their relationship was so interdependent that many would call buffaloes Thai farmers’ best friends. As a means of transportation, Thai buffaloes had also commonly been used in agriculture to plough paddy fields. In other words, they helped Thai farmers produce premium quality rice for export. Cheap and tasty, Thai rice has been globally recognized and consumed.
Modern machines brought to Thailand as a result of rapid economic development have now dominated the nation’s agricultural sector. The images of buffaloes working on paddy fields are vivid only in people’s memories. They have gradually been replaced by the so-called iron buffaloes or tractors and sophisticated tilling machines. Also abandoned with the buffaloes are local wisdom and valuable knowledge about training and working with buffaloes. Many young farmers have failed on how to use buffaloes to plough or work on their farm. As energy crisis looms large, the surge in oil prices has prompted the return to buffaloes as breathing machines in agriculture.
When she was presented with a plot of land in Srakaew province by Mr. Somjit and Mrs. Manee Em-erb, Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn granted an initiative to the Chaipattana Foundation to develop into a buffalo and agricultural school. Her initiative led to the establishment of the Kasornkasivit School which was officially opened in March, 2009.
According to the royal initiative, the Kasornkasiwit School would serve as a training school for water buffalos to enable them to plough and work in agriculture. Training would also be offered to their owners and interested public who wish to obtain the skills in working with buffaloes for agriculture and knowledge for maintenance of buffaloes. In addition, the School would serve as a centre for general information concerning the folk and simplistic way of living in tune with His Majesty the King’s Philosophy of Self-Sufficiency.
Farmers & Buffaloes Training
The Kasornkasiwit School has a pool of local experts who are the source of agricultural knowledge and willing to share their expertise with farmers and the general public keen on using buffaloes in agriculture. The aim of the buffaloes training course is to tame the animals and teach them to plough efficiently. For farmers, the school offers a course that will enable them to be familiar with and to instruct the buffaloes as well as to apply the equipments in ploughing and take good care of the animals. In addition, the farmers will be informed of the integrated planting of animal food and the concept of self-sufficiency.
Living Agricultural Exhibition
A space was developed into a living exhibition to display the paddy farming appliances from the ancient times, which were invented by Thai folk wisdom and have been used in actual agriculture within the School.
Rice Paddy Plot
The Kasornkasivit School has a plot of land for growing rice at different timing to learn of the growing process. In addition to rice, other plants are integrated into the plot in order to optimize the land and fertilize the soil without the use of chemicals.
Her Royal Highness graciously designated Her Royal Highness Princess Adityadhornkitikhun to create the Kasornkasiwit School’s emblem.
The Kasornkasiwit School is the collaboration between various public agencies such as the provincial agencies of Sra Kaew Province, Department of Livestock, Rice Department, Royal Irrigation Department, Land Development Department, Department of Agricultural Extension, Department of Fisheries, and Department of Rural Roads. The Kasornkasiwit School also supports the linkage between the royal projects by receiving local villagers from the Doi Tung Development Project (Implementation Site) in accordance with the royal initiative to share and exchange the community knowledge and wisdom.
For more information please contact:
999 Sa Kaeo Sub-district
Mueang District, Sa Kaeo Province
Tel: 037 435 058
Office of the Chaipattana Foundation in Bangkok
608 Dusit Palace (Sanam Suepa
Sri Ayutthaya Road, Dusit
Tel: 02 282 4425-8 ext 116-117
Fax: 02 282 3339
The Cows-Buffaloes Bank for Farmers according to the Royal Initiative
Bureau of Livestock Development and Technology Transfer
Chai-Asawarak Building, 4th Floor
Department of Livestock
Phayathai Road, Ratchathewi
Tel: 02 653 4444 ext. 3381-5