Agriculture is the main industry in Myanmar, once this was the biggest rice exporter in Asia, but it broke down after the former regimes try to experiment with communist / socialist ideas. Businesses and industries related broke down because of this and until now there is very little advance because the main structures from before are still in operation.
Main agriculture products are rice, beans, butter beans, kidney beans, black eye beans, bamboo beans, red beans, mung beans, peas, pigeon and kenaf.
Plus last but not least the business is totally in the hand of Indian trading companies who completely cornered the market and make huge profits together with their counterparts in India, this is still a legacy of British colonial times when also all the was dominated by Indian companies. The only sector which is mainly in local hand (state) is rice.
The reason is simple, the English allowed them to dominate the market, the English made huge profits via licensing and bribing, well and we have exactly this problem up to now.
It is not to far fetched to conclude that one of the real problem of present day Myanmar was the behavior of British colonialists who destroyed what was function locally and streamlined everything to fit their purpose. After they run away like a thief in the night and left the mess with the Myanmar’s.
Today the Brits and their close friends US Americans try again to tell them what they should do, totally ignoring that they have been the source of this mess, via colonial times and the US because they indirectly brought WW2 into the country.
But luckily the Myanmar’s don’t listen to the old colonist who just preach nonsense the whole time anyway.
Agriculture Products are
Beans – butter beans, kidney beans, black eye beans, bamboo (rice beans),
red beans, mung beans and others.
Peas – pigeon pea, black matpe (urad) and others.
Sesame and by Products
Spices – coriander, dry ginger, turmeric (finger, powder), red chilli, onions
Timber – squares, planks, parquet, scantling (planed & others) logs etc.
Rattan – The agriculture cultivation of the lowland is still the main means of income in Myanmar.
For the wet form rice-cultivation,
the land must be lightly flooded for a good part of the season ; A good agriculture season is one in which a large proportion of the fields have enough water for an early start and in which the rainfall is steady, not leaving
Myanmar Products Hamlet Mill
the surface to dry up by a long break in the rain nor deluging the soil at other times. All Myanmar agriculture alluvial land of favorable elevation and quality is laid out in level rice-fields. Where the rainfall is ample-fifty inches and upwards portions of the diluvia land’s soil can be utilized in the same way by merely saving the surface-water.
In agriculture regions of lighter rainfall, in a few localities, such land is brought under rice by help of irrigation and if need be by terracing as well. The agriculture rice-fields are bordered by low turfy mounds (kazin) about a cubit high, to keep in the water.
These regular rice-lands
form large parts of the country, the rest being practically irreclaimable, mainly mountain. Other areas of alluvial plains (kwin) are flooded from three to ten feet deep in the rains. They are full with elephant-grass (kaing) and studded through with silk-cotton trees and a few other species. The lowest levels in the kwin form shallow lagoons which dry up in the hot season. Dry-season crops like ‘sugar-cane (which is also grown on the wet system), maize, lentils, and vegetables for a limited market’ are obtained in the kaing, there are also other Myanmar products.
Myanmar agriculture was once the rice-mart of the world but communists ruined the country . The wet or staple cultivation begins between June and August, as soon as the grass-sod which has formed on the rice-fields in the by-season and which has served for pasture in the interval has got thoroughly water-logged.
The soil is then turned, about six inches deep, with a plough bearing a shoe of bronze or iron. Where elephants are available a large ton is used which does the work of four ploughs. The clods left by the plough arc broken fine, and the wet soil worked into slush by herds of buffaloes driven round and round in the fields. If there are not enough cattle, the plough-clods are worked down with harrows drawn by buffaloes or oxen.
A rotary implement is coming into use to prepare the clods for the harrow. There is very little open grass-land in the moist region. Unless the scrub which springs up is cut, the land soon relapses into jungle.
For the above operations cattle are needful to the cultivator, though he makes little use of the manure and does not use the milk at all. The cattle are only used for draught and very little care is bestowed on breeding.
During a large part of the year there is no work for the buffaloes, as they are of little service for wheel-draught ; then they are left to roam at large. They frequent the streams and lagoons, where they are followed by egrets and crows, which pick the worms out of the mud as the buffaloes turn over in their wallow.
While Myanmar agriculture crops are standing, cattle have to be kept in pens at night, and herds have to watch them by day. This work is d one by children from twelve years upwards. The buffalo-pen is made near the house, if possible in a water-logged spot where the animals can wallow in the mud, which protects them from -the bites of gad-flies and mosquitoes. Where there is no wallow, smoky fires have to be made to keep the insects away.
Myanmar agriculture rice field in the Irrawaddy Delta
In certain localities of the delta cattle have to be protected with curtains.
In the arid region fodder has to be grown for the cattle, but goats find pasture and are kept for their milk.
The rice-fields first ploughed and ready are sown broad-cast for nurseries (fiyo-gin). A month later, when the rice-plants are about a foot high, they are taken up and transplanted into the prepared fields, a span apart. The roots are simply pressed down into the soft slush with the fingers or with a forked stick. The acre produces thirty to eighty bushels of grain, according to soil and season.
The ripe corn stands three to five feet high, and so thick as to keep down tares. Unlike hill-rice which requires several heavy weeding in the season, the wet rice-fields need no care beyond that of regulating the water-supply. Where there is drainage for the water, it is allowed to stand only a few inches high on the ground.
As tee grain ripens, the soil is allowed to dry. If there is a head of water available during the rains, channels are led to the fields to keep the supply equal. If the supply is near and only at a slightly lower level than the Myanmar agriculture fields, the effects of drought are counteracted by various devices such as the ka-hnwe. Running water at too low a level to lay on to the fields is utilized by help of a bamboo water-wheel (jut), or if the water be still, the wheel is driven by ox-gear. In some parts, rice is planted on the river banks as the floods begin to subside.
The varieties Myanmar products such as rice, of which there are many, suited to different soils and modes of cultivation, take from three to five months to mature. The harvest of the crops is from October to December, according to the variety and time of planting out.
When the grain turns yellow, flights of parakeets and other birds descend on the crops, from which they have to be scared till reaping-time. Myanmar products such as bamboo clappers are worked by bast lines in a radius of a hundred yards from the watcher’s hut. Where there is an abundance of pasture for cattle, the stubble is left very high and is burned where it stands, to manure the ground.
But if straw is needed for fodder the corn is cut close to the ground, having first been laid by pressing it down with bamboos, which makes it easier, for reaping villagers cooperate. But in the plains of the delta, where cultivation has extended so greatly, there is not labor enough on the spot to reap the crop, harvest laborers come down from Myanmar proper.
The sheaves are left to dry for a day in the sun and then gathered into garbs. These are piled on a dry field into a circular heap some three feet high, and broad enough for a herd of buffaloes to tramp round upon and tread the grain off the ear, to which it is attached by a slender petiole. Another way is to pile the garbs in a high crescent-shaped heap, round the central space of which four to six head of cattle are made to travel abreast and tread the garbs which are cast down from above. The grain keeps best in the husk and is stored in bins of bamboo wattle smeared with clay.
The covering of the rice-grain is a strong adherent husk like that of barley, but without any beard. Rice in the husk is called Saba (Engl. paddy). Leaning the coarse yellow husk is a shell of bran, and beneath that a delicate white pellicle. The two outer coverings have to be removed and the inner one preserved. ” Cargo rice,” which forms the bulk of the mill produce, is three parts rice, simply husked, and one part paddy. The mixture bears the transport better than white rice. Cleaning the rice with the hand-mill, cakes and sweets, rice is ground with water in first soaking, it is passed through the mill fluid, which is strained and used while fresh.
Myanmar’s agriculture clean the rice according to daily need. This is done either by simple pounding or by first husking the grain in a wooden mill (kyeissiin), and then pounding it to get off the bran. The mortar is of hard wood, with a hard wood pounder as heavy as the arm can wield ; or else the pounder is mounted in a tilting-beam for foot-power. Chaff and bran are separately winnowed out with sieves and trays (sagchv) of bamboo, and in exposed places by the help of the wind also. For wholesale husking, the native mill is composed of two strong wicker-work cylinders made solid with clay, in which are embedded upright staves of hard wood As the mill wears clown, the layers of wood keep above the clay like the layers of enamel in a herbivore’s tooth, maintaining a rough surface for work. In the early clays of the export trade, rice was husked for shipping in this way. The separation of the chaff is done with a machine copied from our farmyard and now manufactured. Myanmar, beans, bamboo, pigeon pea, turmeric finger