Sowing the seeds of self-reliance
1 Dec 2018 By PHUSADEE ARUNMASBangkok Post
Wiwat Salyakamthorn, aka Ajarn Yak, made his name over the decades preaching to farmers the sufficiency philosophy conceived and developed by the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej [Rama IX] to sustain Thailand's agricultural sector.
Mr Wiwat, who comes from a farming family in Chachoengsao province, has worked at the Office of the Royal Development Projects Board for 16 years, advising farmers on how to practise self-reliance. Examples include using eco-friendly homemade fertilisers and growing mixed crops to manage risks from unpredictable weather.
But only a few farmers listened to what he talked about, with some even snubbing him with a sarcastic remark that he could say whatever he wanted because he worked at the Office of the Royal Development Projects Board.
Even worse, some shot back that if sufficiency was as good as he said it was, why didn't he do it himself? ...
What Mr Wiwat finally did in response to the question is an interesting and instructive story.