The Life of Rice

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Why

The farmers of the village of Bon Non Wan Fai are in distress due to the resent rain and storms. Most of the rice harvest is failing due to the latest rain and storms we had.

Although the money i want to collect through this project is not for the making of the film about the life of rice, but for the farmers in my village. It will help towards the cooperation of those farmers in playing their role in the movie.  This years harvest is destroyed due to heavy rainfall and this is my way to help.

How will I help

Below a short description about the rice in Thailand which is the starting point for the movie.

Whilst rice (Oryza Sativa) is cultivated throughout Thailand – in over 10 million hectares of paddies – and whilst the country’s central plains are often considered Thailand’s rice bowl, the Northeast (or Isan) in fact accounts for over half of the nation’s rice paddies.

Across Isan, at mid year , farmers will wait for the first rains before ploughing their paddies, either in the traditional manner with a plough drawn by a water buffalo, or with a more modern “Kubota” – or mechanical plough. Rice seedlings are grown in well irrigated nursery paddies, often situated close to lakes, wetlands or rivers and streams.

Once the paddies have been ploughed and adequate rain has fallen, the farmers will then transplant the seedlings and “Dam Naa” – or push the young emerald seedlings gently into the prepared paddies one by one, separating them to allow for their growth. This usually occurs from June to July, when the rice paddies will be alive with farmers and villagers busy planting their treasured crops.

Whilst the scene looks bucolic, this is backbreaking work for the uninitiated – but you are welcome to join in and play your part in the crop production!

The rice then grows as more rain falls, the sparse seedlings slowly growing until the paddies are a dense quilt of bright greens. As the rains clear and the intense summer heat asserts its dominion, the paddies dry and the rice plants turn to deep gold.

A careful watch is kept on the paddies until the end of the year, when the crop is ready for harvest. The rice is almost always harvested by hand, with sharp scythes, from November through to January.

It is then threshed to remove the rice grains from the stalks. This is performed either manually, using two sticks tied together with a rope to grasp a bunch of golden stalks and to hit them on the ground to release the grains, or with a thresher truck for a speedier operation.

The grains may now be taken off to the local village mill, where the husk is removed from the grains and for eventual polishing and sacking. These sacks are then stored by each household in a purpose built granary in the house grounds: look out for a small hut on stilts with a solid door – this is the villager’s rice supply for the coming year.

The cost of Rice

The life of rice farmers is already under pressure as rice is very cheap in Thailand. A ton of rice will make a farmer around 10.000 Bath (£220 / $ 280) and on average they harvest around 3 ton per farmer per year. They can only have 1 harvest per year here in the North-East. This means that an rice farmer get 30.000 Bath per year. They need to pay 5.000 Bath for new seeds for the next season which leaves the with only 25.000 Bath to live of for a year.

The Thai Government

The  Thai government is not helping at all and with the resend dead of the King no help can be expected from there as well ( as was done in the past). This leave these farmers in a dreadful situation.

The Appeal

This appeal is to help them start the new harvest season fresh and depth free. The goal is to raise £5000 ($ 6300 / 220.000 Bath). This will allows for the loss of the harvest and buys enough new seeds for the next season.

This is not a disaster on  grand scale and yes they will survive as always, but a little help can make their lives easier and if 5000 people give 1 pound this would all go away. This is not a charity and I am doing this because I want to help. All the money raised will go directly to the farmers and nothing will be lost in admin cost as so many charities are doing.

So please press the button below and donate £1 or more and help me help them

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