LOCALS engaged in Vietnamese highland coffee plantation (Arabica coffee) on 1,066 acres in Ngaphe Township, Minbu District, Magway Region, which is suitable to the climate, reap success.
The Ngaphe Township (Natyaykan highland area) is located between longitude 94°25’E and 94° 26’E of Minbu-An Road. It sits above 3,819 feet above sea level. The locals commonly cultivate coffee, tea leaf, elephant foot yam, avocado, citrus, chilli, banana, jackfruit and other perennial trees. About 40 acres of highland Arabica coffee plantation are also found at the Natyaykan coffee farm under the Ngaphe Township Agriculture Department. There is a total of 1,026 acres of private highland coffee plantations in those villages.
“A group of coffee growers has been formed to enhance the marketable quality. The awareness courses have been conducted three times and so has been the demonstrations. Coffee seeds, plants and agricultural tools were also provided as well. The number of acres has grown year over year. The Barminnia Plant in Yenangyoung Township, Win Coffee factory in Yangon and Akar Coffee group go on surveys down to villages in Ngaphe Township and offer K3 to K5 million per tonne, allowing the growers to generate handsome income. Sometimes, the intercropping of coffee trees with avocado, lychee, tea leaf, elephant foot yam and other perennial crops help farmers increase their income and improve their resilience to climate impacts,” said U Zaw Thein, in charge of the Natyaykan coffee farm.
Under the Mekong-Lancang Cooperation Special Fund, two model coffee farming acres (H528 and SL-34 varieties) are conducted on a trial basis. A crop drying facility has been set up with a solar dryer system at the coffee farm, with a view to providing drying service to the coffee growers in ten village-tracts in the mountain region. Additionally, seedlings of coffee and other shade trees and coffee seeds will be distributed as well, he added.
The Natyaykan coffee farm in Ngaphe Township produces 2.8 tonnes of coffee seeds and the private farms produce approximately 43 tonnes, totalling over 45 tonnes. Those coffee beans are delivered to markets of Ywangan, Yenangyoung and PyinOoLwin townships, fetching K3 to 5 million per tonne. — Ma Yu (Ngaphe)/GNLM