From teaching languages to teaching health consciousness, Aunt Daeng had an interest in Sacha Inchi after learning about it from a television program. She traveled to Tak Province to visit a monk whose expertise is in the seedlings. However, due to regulations, she was unable to plant it within Tak. Aunt Daeng returned to Phattalung province with 100 packed seedlings and thus began her farm and has been up and running since 2013. She dug deeper into research on the seeds at the University of Patthalung.
With a drive for health consciousness, Aunt Daeng planted and grew her sacha inchi without any chemicals. However, she realised that even though she was careful with her planting method, her harvest could still have been exposed to chemicals from the many rubber plantations around her area. Aunt Daeng decided to move the farm away from the rubber plantation areas and dig a trench around the farm (sort of like a moat) to prevent chemicals from entering her farm area. Not only did this preserve the quality of the harvest but it also created a safe working environment for the farmers who no longer had to worry about being exposed to chemicals from the surroundings.
The farm is registered as a OTOP. It is a learning center for planting, producing and extracting oil, as well as producing tea. “At first we didn't have an oil extractor so we had to use manual labor to extract the oil by hand. The first thing to do is the Sacha inchi seed must be pounded, then filtered with a thin white cloth (like a cheese cloth) and then squeezed out the oil. Later, a hydraulic oil extractor was purchased to extract it instead of manual labor. But really, we don't extract much. It is a household industry that can only extract up to 10 litres (2.64 gallons) of oil per day. We also do it for our own good health and make others have good health.”
Right now the farm only grows Sacha Inchi since it requires heaps on sunlight and a lot of managing to keep the quality top notch. Sacha Inchi seedlings are fairly odd and do not like water, water actually causes them to mould and thus they are grown in the dry season and only watered by having water sprinkled on them so they don’t dry out. From years of practice, Aunt Daeng and her farmers have perfected their growing method since they have only been specialising in Sacha Inchi for the past 8 years.
“Yes, we believe in the power of nature, we do it ourselves and use it ourselves and see the real results that everything natural can make us have a better quality of life. Customers also come back to buy our Sacha inchi products again because there are no side effects.”
Unfortunately due to COVID, farmers have had a lot of debt, because their income is not enough to meet expenses, but farmers try to save. That’s why Aunt Daeng created a Farmers Rehabilitation Fund to have members join in and plant Sacha Inchi for more income with currently around 100 members and is currently trying to receive funding from the government to help more farmers. Aunt Daeng has an entreprenual spirit and her long term goal is to expand the farm and perhaps start processing various products, such as making salad dressing, Khao Yam (her vision for it is to go to the contest and win the 1st prize of the country), massage oil, soap, and also due to the versatility of Sacha Inchi she may even produce snacks in the coming future.
Aunt Daeng’s high quality Sacha Inchi are featured in our: