Cambodia Mushroom Program
Cambodia remains one of the poorest countries in the world. To help address this concern, World Hope International launched an agri - culture program focused on growing mushrooms to help smallholder famers to sustainably improve their family's wellbeing. Specifically, WHI teaches local Cambodians how to cultivate mushrooms using a simple storage unit made up of bamboo, hay, and plastic, inside of which the mushrooms will grow. The method is easy to learn, and is therefore simple to transfer to individuals and communities. Meaning “Compassionate Earth,” Thera Metrey is a local Cambodian cooperative enterprise for collective sorting, processing and delivery of mushrooms and other cash crops produced by farmer households. Through Thera Metrey, WHI connects farmers to markets at competitive prices, ensuring production leads to income.
Over $2,000 has been added to farmer incomes annually, enabling them to stop traveling to urban areas for work, save for larger purchases, and pay off existing loans. As husbands and wives no longer need to separate to earn a living, families work side-by-side to contribute to the success of their mushrooms farms. It also makes the families less vulnerable to trafficking.
Some mushroom growers have built water wells to increase their production and to expand into other cash crops like mung beans, which enhance soil in addition to serving as a food source, as well as higher value cultivars such as black and yellow ginger, rosella, cacao, and avocado. Others have gone on to build even more mushroom houses and buy agricultural waste from neighboring farms to supply their mushroom operations. In the face of increasingly volatile weather, the mushrooms are climate resilient and able to be grown year-round, helping farmers mitigate the risk of crop failure and enjoy a measure of food security.
Economic Recovery and Development
- Cambodia>Kampong Cham