Mitr Phol Park in Phu Kiew district, Chaiyaphum province, to observe Mitr Phol Group's sugarcane, bio-mass power and bio-ethanol production facilities and Mitr Phol's 'ModernFarm' concept. The concept is a key initiative that reflects Mitr Phol Group's determination to support the 'One Tambon One agro-SME' project in accordance with the 'Pracharath' strategy as well as improve the quality of life of cane growers and surrounding communities in a sustainable way.
Mr. Buntoeng Vongkusolkit, Chief Operating Officer, Cane Management Business Group, Mitr Phol Group said that "we conduct our business together with community and environment development. Our ModernFarm concept is a part of our commitment to bring knowledge to cane growers, apply modern technology and management system to reduce operating costs and help enhance productivity while preserving the environment and strengthen the community in a sustainable way. The practice simply supports and aligns with the government's 'One Tambon One agro-SME' project aimed to drive the grassroot economy in accordance with the "Pracharath" strategy."
On January 13, 2016, Mitr Phol Group entered into an agreement of joint cooperation to implement 'One Tambon One agro-SME' project along with other six public and private organizations e.g., Community Organizations Development Institute (Public Organization),
The Cooperative League of Thailand, Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives, Government Savings Bank, National Village and Urban Community Fund Office and National Farmers Council. Under the agreement, Mitr Phol Group strives to enhance Thai cane farming communities through knowledge and technology transfer as well as build new generation of 'Smart Farmers' to bring a sustainable development to Thai agricultural sector.
Mitr Phol Group's farm management concept is beneficial to cane growers of every size – small, middle and large scale.
Small cane growers - with farm size of 1 – 50 rai, adopt mixed farming of diverse food crops, rather than monoculture, for both eating and selling, together with raising fish, pig and chicken, as a way to increase sources of revenue. Small farms can get together to hire labor from mid-sized farms, which provides effective planting, maintenance and harvesting services at a price cheaper than farm labor contractors.
Mid-sized cane growers – with farm size of 50 – 250 rai, adopt 'Smart Farmer' model by improving and developing capacity to become labor service provider for small farms, with support in procurement of full scale agricultural machinery and make full use of the machines by contracting labor services from small farms
Large-sized cane growers – with farm size of 250 rai and above, adopt 'ModernFarm' model, by applying world-class knowledge base from Australia, customized to suit the local environment, to help increase productivity and reduce operating costs in a sustainable manner. In addition, modern sugarcane production technologies for large farm are also employed e.g., Precision Farming and Benchmarking.
Mitr Phol Group's ModernFarm model has been proven to bring benefits and sustainable development to cane farming communities as seen from the better quality of life of cane growers, higher farm productivity, lower operating costs and lessened environmental impacts. Moreover, the practice helps create jobs in local communities and connect local people to local businesses which can greatly contribute to the health of local economy. This also helps reduce rural to urban migration and thus alleviates labor shortage in Thai agricultural sector.
Together with ModernFarm model, Mitr Phol Group also provides cane growers with a comprehensive 'from plow to plate' support program covering financial aid, skill and knowledge transfer and guarantee of produce purchase at fair prices. Financial support ranges from short-term loan for buying cane shoots, soil, fertilizer and weed control; mid-term loan for small irrigation system and equipment and mid/long-term loan for farm equipment and machinery.