Author Topic: Thai Silk Farming in Korat (Pakthongchai)  (Read 5396 times)

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Offline Johnnie F.

Thai Silk Farming in Korat (Pakthongchai)
« on: December 28, 2009, 07:33:38 PM »
Last year’s Jim Thompson Farm Tour welcomed over 80,000 visitors! To meet such a demand, this year’s opening hours have been extended as well as the total number of days for the farm tour.

Open Every Day from 09.00 am until 05.00 pm beginning on Saturday, 19 December 2009 through Sunday, 10 January 2010.

An exciting variety of agricultural, cultural, and just pure fun activities will educate and entertain all visitors—both young and old.

Highlights of the farm tour:
Mushroom cultivation, hydroponic flower gardens, silkworm rearing, decorative plant nurseries and large fields of colorful flowers and sunflowers waving in the bright sunshine are just a few of the events to be enjoyed. The giant pumpkin patch still remains the favorite family attraction. The variety in shapes and sizes of the multitude of pumpkins on display in the fields and already harvested are truly impressive and provide endless opportunities for memorable family photographs.

New agricultural attractions for 2009 include: organic farming of fruits and vegetables and rice fields where assorted Isan rice varieties have been planted and will be ready to harvest during the farm tour period. Our visitors will have the opportunity to mill their own rice using antique hand-operated wooden rice grinders. Afterwards, they can winnow the rice themselves and then take home their own “rice crop”. Our formidable, sturdy water buffalo, “Boonlai”, will be standing by available for photographs.

The Isan and Korat villages are star attractions featuring antique houses unique in architecture and in pristine condition. These traditional Isan and Korat houses and various structures commonly found in rural areas are fast disappearing. The village project is an effort to conserve, as well as preserve, the fast disappearing architecture, crafts and style of living in northeastern Thailand. In doing so, Jim Thompson seeks to preserve the rich cultural heritage of the Thai-Lao peoples who inhabit northeastern Thailand. Various village activities will take place around and in the Isan and Korat houses such as traditional ceremonies and native dances, A better appreciation and understanding of Isan culture by both foreigh and Thai visitors will certainly result.

The Jim Thompson Farm is ideally located, lying between the large Lam Samlai Reservoir and the steep, bamboo-infested Phrayaprab Hills. The farm covers an area of 721 rai or 280 acres. It was established in 1988 primarily to raise mulberry for the production of silkworm eggs and silk cocoons (sericulture).

Subsequent improvements in mulberry productivity made possible by advanced agricultural techniques (drip-irrigation) and other farm efficiencies, have allowed greater use of the land for a multitude of other agricultural purposes and, finally, tourist activities.

The Jim Thompson Thai Silk Company has long been committed to promoting Thai raw silk production in the village of northeastern Thailand (Isan). Mr. Jim Thompson first visited Pak Thong Chai in the 1950’s, where he found a thriving village of silk weavers many of whom become “pioneer” suppliers selling their hand woven silks to the Thai Silk Company (Jim Thompson).

The Company has an active program of propagating hybrid silkworm eggs of a high standard and quality for distribution to the thousands of villages throughout the Northeastern (Isan). The silkworm eggs are packaged in the batches of 18,000 eggs and carefully transported to distribution centers where the villagers take delivery. In a matter of days the eggs hatch and the rearing cycle begins. After a few weeks the villagers can opt to sell the fresh cocoons or reel the cocoons into skeins to sell to Jim Thompson. Both the traditional golden yellow Thai silk cocoons and the Chinese hybrid white cocoons can be reared by the villagers depending on their skills and the village environment.

The Jim Thompson farm entrance is certainly unique with hundreds of wooden buffalo cartwheels from days gone by lining the road and fencing-in the vast mulberry fields. At the main entrance, farm tour tickets can be purchased (Adults Baht 60 and Children Baht 40). Several vehicle parking lots are located near to the farm entrance. Also located in this area are bathroom facilities and a wheelchair access bathroom.

Adjacent to the entrance is the Farmer’s Market where a large selection of fresh pesticide-free fruits and vegetables and a variety of farm-made snack foods are on sale. In great demand are the delicious melons and cantaloupes. The farm is also famous for raising pumpkins in all shapes and sizes, and all are on sale here. There is also an interesting assortment of selected merchandise and traditional hand woven textiles from the Jim Thompson factory available for purchase.

Northeastern food is given top billing on the Jim Thompson farm. You will find a full array of Isan food vendors selling a wide variety of tempting northeastern dishes, especially chosen to please and fire-up your taste buds. In an open-air casual setting with lovely views of the mulberry plantation and surrounding greenery, visitors can enjoy a tasty Isan meal.

For this year’s Jim Thompson Farm Tour, round-trip transportation from Bangkok to Jim Thompson Farm in Nakhon Ratchasima is provided for visitors during weekends and New Year’s holidays. For more information, please contact 08-5660-7336, 0-2762-2566 or e-mail: farmtour@jimthompson.com

Fun is the one thing that money can't buy
 

Sonny

  • Guest
Re: Thai Silk Farming in Korat (Pakthongchai)
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2009, 01:50:41 AM »
The top picture is an advertisement for an event at Jim Thomson farm during Songkran, in April, not the tour in December and January event.
 

sicho

  • Guest
Re: Thai Silk Farming in Korat (Pakthongchai)
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2009, 11:45:03 AM »
Here are some pics. of and text about the present event at Jim Thompson Farm:

http://www.grumpyexpat.com/blog/2009/12/jim-thompson-farm-pak-thong-ch.html

http://www.grumpyexpat.com/forum/kitchen-garden-f34/jim-thompson-farm-t489.html

I visited both this and the songkran event this year and would say that the winter one is the better of the two.

Here's some text from the blog post as a taster:

Jim Thompson Farm, Pak Thong Chai, about 50 kilometres south of Nakhon Ratchasima, opens to the public only occasionally - Song Kran and a few days in December. The December opening provides an opportunity to see the flower and vegetable nurseries, traditional crafts and musicians. Naturally, there are shopping opportunities too and also a few free gifts for visitors.
 

dirtydog

  • Guest
Re: Thai Silk Farming in Korat (Pakthongchai)
« Reply #3 on: December 30, 2009, 11:43:07 AM »
Found a place in Pak Thong Chai that sells Thai silk fabric.

Waeota Thai Silk

Traditional, Natural, Ethical, Pure – Real Thai Silk Products

Waeota Thai Silk specialises in the production of 100% silk fabric , scarves, wraps, hand bags and other accessories using traditional methods. Everything is hand woven. We use natural dyes made from replaceable sources. Our employees work in their own homes using looms that we supply. We produce fabric in single colours, interwoven colours, screen printed patterns and tie dye.

No fossil fuels are used. Water for washing, dyeing and rinsing is drawn from our own deep well. Drying is by the sun. Waste water is harmless to the environment.

Our dyes are made from natural and replaceable sources such as leaves, fruits, spent banana plant trunks and, for the earthier shades, a touch of lake mud.

With the support of the Thai government, we are reintroducing old, ecologically friendly methods of production that were in decline for many years.

Please enjoy this shop window and Contact Us with your enquiries, orders and comments.

http://www.naturalthaisilk.com/
 

 



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