Local agricultural entrepreneur Hun Lak has unveiled plans to expand his current plantations of commonly grown rice and bananas and also invest in locally produced vegetables, in a move to increase domestic production and decrease Cambodia’s over-reliance on imported vegetables.
Hun, who is the director of Longmate Agriculture Co Ltd said the rising domestic demand for locally and safely produced vegetables is the driving force behind his expansion plans.
The projects will be a joint venture with other local entrepreneurs that share the same viewpoint.
“My company will be partnering with other local producers to supply a variety of vegetables to the local market, all will be safely grown and all will be certified by Good Agricultural Practices [voluntary audits that verify high standards of production],” Hun said.
“Currently, the project is at the stage of seeking assistance from the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries and should be ready for operation within the year,” Hun added.
According to Hun, the projects will be mainly located in the Kandal
and Kampong Speu provinces.
“At the moment, Cambodians prefer to import their vegetables from neighbouring countries like Vietnam and Thailand because the quality is much better, with many local suppliers selling below-standard vegetables. So I think this is an opportunity to sell good produce to the local market, properly certified by the Good Agricultural Practices and build confidence in consumers,” Hun said.
Chan Rithy, director of the Provincial Agricultural Department of Kampot, applauded the project.
“Longmate Agriculture has already invested well in banana and rice plantations, so when they expand to other agricultural products, they will be assisting both local yield and supply for domestic demand,” Chan said.
Hun Lak’s endeavours are in keeping with Prime Minister Hun Sen’s recent call to boost the local production of vegetables, meat and seafood to help supply local demand and reduce the dependence on imports, “This is a good opportunity during the COVID-19 pandemic to bolster up local production for the whole agricultural sector,” Mr Hun Sen said.