Dongfon Farm
Rice Cereals

Introduction of the Spot

To preserve good mountains and water, the farmer insists on organic farming.

Xiuguluan River is a river closely related with the development of agriculture in Eatern Taiwan. The nutrients brought by all the large and small tributaries from the Coastal Mountain and Central Mountain converge in Xiuguluan River, irrigating and fertilizing the fields in the river basin. The largest rice field in Hualien is located in Yuli, Southern Hualien. Provincial Highway 9 at the west bank of the river is always heavy in traffic. The east bank, as the locals say, is County Highway 193 that passes through the Coastal Mountain. The six neighborhoods from north to south are composed of many small settlements. These places are so quiet that even animals seem especially relaxed.

Dongfon Farm is located at the southern end of the east bank. Entering the gate and passing the clear sign, visitors see a large building. That is the working space of the organic cooperative. More than 20 years ago, the Hualien District Agricultural Research and Extension Station promoted organic rice growing in Yuli. The leader of the Dong Feng Agriculture Production and Marketing Group, Zeng Wen-zhen, and his brother, Zeng Wen-nan, cared a lot about health and made up their minds to engage in producing organic rice. Like all the children working away from their hometown, Tseng Kuo-Chi decided to take over the farming job due to his father, Zeng Wen-zhen’s, physical condition.

Providing an eco-friendly environment by cherishing nature.

Tseng Kuo-Chi believes that traditional agriculture has to undergo reformation. To operate the production cooperative long-term, first he needs to establish a systematic company. He once saw an old farmer walking slowly with his back crooked only because he wanted to pick up the leftover rice from the harvesting machine. Zheng was touched by the elderly man’s affection to cherish everything. Dongfon Farm was thus established.

He gathered local farmers to establish a cooperative. He developed agriculture supported by the community through the good name of the place. The manpower and production both focus on the place of origin. The farm currently contains about 200 ha. of paddy fields, distributing at both banks of Xiuguluan River. Engaged in organic farming for more than 25 years, Zeng provides crops with a natural sweetness. The eco-system of the paddy fields is quite abundant. Besides frogs, there are numerous small fish and even clams.

The production of organic rice relies on organic fertilizers. The rice husks produced by organic rice used to be agricultural waste and were only used for paving poultry houses. Since the rice husks removed from the organic rice are also organic, the farm ferments the materials and makes organic fertilizers. After six months, the materials return to the land. The crops eliminated during the production process are circulated in agricultural production, reducing pollution to a minimum.

Through paddy-upland crop rotation, it is more economical.

The farm currently is operates paddy-upland crop rotation. After growing rice in the first phase, the farm grows upland crops. All the crops have diseases and pests. When the diseases in paddy-fields adapt to water and stay in the soil, the irrigated water in the next season will provide nutrients to make them stronger, which affects the rice. When the farm changes to grow upland crops, the diseases are depressed naturally.

After diseases are reduced and before the farm regrows rice in the second season, the farmer has to weed and remove pests. When the farm changes to grow upland crops, the cost of manpower and materials can be largely reduced. Dongfon Farm collected statistics and discovered that 80 tons of materials are saved when the farm changes from rice growing to beans, saving over 50% of wastage. For organic farming, it costs nearly 100 million dollars to weed manually every year. After crop rotation, it saves at least 300,000 dollars in manpower expenses. The third harvest before the Chinese New Year is shorter. The farm changes to grow rape blossoms, cosmos and other green fertilizers and wheats, which can be harvested after more than two months.