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Isan farmers rushing up to harvest flooded crops

Isan farmers rushing up to harvest flooded crops

Farmers in Khan Dong district Buri Rum were left with no choice but to harvest their crops prematurely as water from the overflowing Moon River spread over at least 2,000 rai of paddy fields at four villages in the north of the province, and was continuing to rise.

Runoff from Nakhon Ratchasima has poured into the Moon River, which has burst its banks in several districts in neighboring Buri Ram province. In Khan Dong district more than 2000 rai of cropland has been flooded.

Farmers from the four villages – Yang Thalae, Muang Thalae, Ngiew and Khaen Thalae – on Monday used boats as they rushed to harvest their grain in fields covered by more than a meter of water.

Their rice would have been fully mature in the next 2-3 weeks, but the farmers said they could not wait that long to harvest it, as the plants would rot and die. The prematurely harvested rice would be dried and kept for home consumption, the farmers said. It was not worth trying to sell it.

Champa Boonharn, 50, of Yang Thalae village, said six of his 12 rai of paddy fields were deep in water. The grain had formed in the flowers but was not yet ripe.

With the floodwater still rising, he had decided to hire people for 300 baht a day to help harvest the crop regardless.

Mr. Champa said he hoped government agencies would urgently survey the flooded farmland in Khan Dong district, and other areas, and provide assistance to those affected. Source: Bangkok Post

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