November 26, 2020 at Sarasin Room, Sirikunakorn Building, Khon Kaen University – Assoc. Prof. Charnchai Panthongviriyakuil, M.D., President of Khon Kaen University welcomed Mr. Sattha Khotchapalayuk, Khon Kaen Vice Governor to the meeting to discuss the approaches for promoting and developing livestock occupation (crickets) in Khon Kaen Province. Over 20 representatives from relevant departments, professors, researchers from the Strategic Research and Coordination Institute for Development of the Northeast joined.
The discussion for the approaches for promoting and developing livestock occupation (crickets) in Khon Kaen Province is under the project to promote and develop livestock occupation in Khon Kaen. The objectives were to find the ways to strengthen cricket farmers and increase their skill and knowledge in farming commercial quality crickets as well as to upgrade the cricket farming as a principle and sustainable occupation for the farmers.
Assoc. Prof. Charnchai Panthongviriyakuil, M.D., President of Khon Kaen University explained that it is widely known that the World’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has already placed crickets as a protein food source of the future. Khon Kaen University by Prof. Dr. Yupa Hanbunsong and other researchers have conducted research on crickets for many years. In 2019, the Strategic Research and Coordination Institute for Development of the Northeast was allocated an amount of budget from the Office of Science, Research and Innovation Promotion Board and the National Research Council to carry out a project for development of cricket farmers in the Northeast so that they would operate under the standard and safe system of production. The farmers under the project that were supported are in Ban Saentor, Bua Yai Sub-district, Nampong District, Khon Kaen. The project has been carried out so that the practices of the cricket farmers will be up to the standard. There are now 21 cricket farms in Khon Kaen from 36 farms all over the country. Therefore, most cricket farms are now in Khon Kaen.
“Cricket farming is one out of six occupations under the mission of Khon Kaen Province. Khon Kaen University, in this regard, is equipped with the knowledge and research work that can help improve and extend the cricket farming. This meeting is a good chance for us to discuss how to promote the occupation for farmers in Khon Kaen. We hope that after this meeting, cricket farming will step forward more concretely, said the President.
The project to promote and develop livestock occupation in Khon Kaen has been carried out to increase production of crickets commercially with an aim for food security for the future. The Office of Livestock, Khon Kaen is responsible for the project, which lasts one year from October 1, 2020 until September 30, 2021. The target group comprises 300 farming households in 26 districts in Khon Kaen. The goal is to have at least 300 commercial quality cricket farms for domestic consumption and for export, with at least 150 farms passing the standard criteria, and with at least 10 groups and networks of strong and sustainable cricket farmers in order for cricket farming to become a principle occupation.
By Rawiporn Saisaenthong