About the Impact Center

ECHO Asia Ag Operations Manager, Boonsong, discusses production with local partner in Myanmar



ECHO Asia Note #31

ECHO Asia, a regional extension arm of ECHO, exists to equip and empower workers in agriculture and community development so that they can be more effective in their work with smallholder farmers and the poor in Asia to improve food security and livelihoods.

We do this by providing free resources, information, training, and seeds to our network members residing in Asia.

Services Offered

  • ECHO Asia Notes and News- technical articles on a wide variety of topics as well as information on upcoming events and happenings in the network. We currently translate these articles into 7 other regional languages including Thai, Burmese, Vietnamese, Mandarin, Indonesian, Hindi and Khmer. All of these resources are available here on ECHOcommunity.org
  • Sharing of new ideas & information- we desire to “ECHO” and promote good agricultural practices happening in Asia!
  • Hosting Agriculture and Community Development events- we routinely host regional and country-wide workshops with organizational partners in order to offer context-relevant information in local languages.
  • Cultivating seeds and sharing seed banking techniques! We currently produce a catalog of nearly 175 seeds from the Chiang Mai Thailand Seed Bank- a continuously expanding seed inventory is available and for sale on ECHOcommunity.org. Our members qualify for 10 free seed packets per year!
  • Partnering with our network to print expanded resources for sale and in our resource library. We have nearly 60 books available at cost at the office and a resource library of nearly 850!
  • Offering technical responses to field questions from network.
  • Providing on-site consultations for organizations and individuals.

For more information please email us at echoasia@echonet.org

Visiting The Impact Center

Although we are not quite ready to receive daily visitors (our seed bank is in the process of moving from another location), we would love to talk to you about volunteering or interning with us!

Please contact our hospitality coordinators (asiahospitality@echonet.org), Caleb and Cayleigh!

Asia RIC Hospitality coordinator CalebAsia RIC Hospitality coordinator Cayleigh


Daniela Riley, Office Manager

Email Address



Mailing Address

Office: PO Box 64, Chiang Mai 50000 Thailand

Seed Bank: PO Box 17, Fang 50110 Thailand

Physical Address

Office: 270/5 Tung Hotel Road Soi 6, T.Watget, A.Meung, Chiang Mai 50000 Thailand

Seed Bank: 121 M.8, T. Mae Na Wang, A.Mae Ai, Chiang Mai 50280 Thailand

Asia Impact Center Updates

Raising Hogs on Banana Silage in Myanmar 2018-04-12

By: Patrick Trail

Agricultural Staff Member at ECHO Asia

Whether passing through, or invited into the home, it would take a visitor to any number of Myanmar’s Karen communities only a few minutes to realize the importance of agriculture. Small home gardens are common to nearly all households, and may be second only in occurrence to the pig that can be found being raised underneath so many homes. Like many other countries in Southeast Asia, land in Myanmar is as hard to come by as the protein that needs to be produced on it, making hog production a viable and popular source of animal protein.

Being omnivores and efficient consumers of household waste, pigs are well suited for integration into smallholder farming systems where space and resources are limiting factors. But even one or two pigs can become costly to feed and will require, in many cases, expensive purchases of additional off farm feed sources.

For this reason, we seek to provide appropriate options for using on farm resources, encouraging farmers to use what they have, to make what they need. At our most recent Myanmar Seed Saving Workshop, our team was delighted to learn that one of our attendees, a former participant of our first Myanmar training event in 2013, had learned there to make fermented banana stalk silage for hog feed, and has for the last 4 years been promoting its use!

Now a Program Manager for World Vision Myanmar, our friend is working to spread this technology to communities within his reach. One of his ongoing projects, which began with 4 participants, encourages the production of fermented banana stalk silage to supplement any purchased feeds needed for raising hogs. Through their own trial and error (and the creation of their own appropriate silage chopper), he and his partners have found that they can reduce the need for purchased feeds by up to 75% by supplementing with their own farm generated feeds, thus improving production margins tremendously. The program now has 120 participants and is expanding to additional communities!

For more information on the production of fermented banana stalk silage and other farm generated hog feeds, please contact our office, and we will be happy to provide you with additional information. For any successes of your own that you wish to share, please leave a comment!

About Asia Impact Center

ECHO Asia Sabine w farmer
Technical advisor, Sabine, trains on fruits in Sri Lanka

Despite considerable economic gains over the past three decades, due to the region's vastness, its enormous population, as well as uneven economic growth, Asia remains home to two-thirds of the world's poor. Remaining challenges related to regional poverty and food insecurity include:

More than 600 million Asians live in absolute poverty (less than $1 a day) and 2/3 of the world’s hungry people live in Asia.

Although Asia's share of the global gross domestic product is expected to approach 42 percent by 2015, the region will still be home to half of the world's poor.

Growth in rice production, Asia's staple, has slowed and rice production areas are in decline.

Growing resource scarcity (i.e., water and arable land) will increasingly constrain food production growth.


Asian leaders issue poverty warning, International Herald Tribune, May 4, 2008; Reducing Poverty and Hunger in Asia: The Role of Agriculture and Rural Development, Edited by Nurul Islam, International Food Policy Research Institute, 2008. World Hunger Statistics, World Food Programme. 2014.


The ECHO Asia Seed Bank is currently transitioning to a new site only 20 minutes outside of Chiang Mai! Production has already begun and construction of new facilities are well on their way! We look forward to hosting lots of training and visitors begining in 2019!



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