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Making and Testing an Alternative Herbicide for Smallholder Farmers
By: Sophie Roberts, Yuwadee Danmalidoi, Rattakarn Arttawuttikun, Kitichai Sampunsinkor, and Abram Bicksler
ECHO Asia Impact Center staff members first heard about alternative herbicide recipes that use fermented papaya and pineapple from a retired technical school teacher and organic farmer, Kru Pratoom. As weeding is a big part of any farmer’s life, the Seed Bank staff wanted to try out a lower-risk herbicide to see if its effects on weeds would warrant its use. They also wanted to ensure that this herbicide would not pose a risk to soil pH, microbiology, structure, and plant uptake and health. This ECHO Asia Research Note describes the process used to create this herbicide, as well as a sampling technique to determine its efficacy on weeds. Look for a future note about the methodology used to help determine its effects on soil microorganisms and health.