1. Skip to content
  2. Skip to main menu
  3. Skip to more DW sites
Hills deforested for growing maize
Image: Florian Nusch

A tropical paradise under threat

April 17, 2018

Fertile soil and an incredible array of exotic fruit, vegetables and spices made Thailand a land of plenty. But as demand for meat there grows, industrialized farming practices are threatening this tropical paradise.


The push towards organic farming in Thailand

Project goal: Promoting sustainable and climate-friendly production and consumption as forests are cleared for maize crops.
Project implementation: Staff are advising the Thai government, as well as consumers, and are helping to establish sustainable manufacture and supply chains. 
Project size: Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines. In Thailand, staff are active in two model regions, Chiang Mai and Nan, where they want to reach 200 homes. 
Project financing: Nearly €4 million ($4.9 million) for three countries over three years (2017 to 2020) as part of the International Climate Initiative (IKI). Around €1 million is going to Thailand.
Project partners: Thai environment and agriculture ministries; World Wildlife Fund (WWF) is leading the project.

Thailand is one of the biggest poultry exporters in the world. That means there's a huge demand for corn feed. The country's maize farmers are increasingly switching to monocultures to keep up, but that quickly exhausts the soil. Now, farmers are also using chemical fertilizers or are clearing forests to make way for new farmland to keep the harvest coming. Environment organization WWF is helping farmers in two pilot areas to find alternatives in cultivating maize, in the hope of halting the destruction of the local ecosystem.

A film by Florian Nusch

Skip next section Explore more
Skip next section DW's Top Story

DW's Top Story

 Electrician working on a power line in the Kharkiv region, October 2022

How Ukraine has maintained its energy supply despite the war

Skip next section More stories from DW
Go to homepage