Farmers in South Pyongan Province proactively engaging in “manure battle”
The North Korean government has again ordered its citizens to engage in a “battle for manure.” While most are unhappy with the forced mobilization every year, some residents in South Pyongan Province are reportedly responding more positively toward participation in the ‘battle’ this year.
“The ‘battle for manure’ is held every year and many people are enthusiastic about meeting their manure quotas,” said a source based near Kumsongho, in South Pyongan Province, on January 11.
“This area had a good harvest in general last year, but those areas that implemented the field management system (pojon damdangjae) had an even better harvest. The corn harvest two years ago was poor, but last year the yields were about 1.5-times higher than before. Barley harvests only yielded around 120 grains per pod in past years, but last year there were around 170.”
The harvest in areas where the vegetable farm responsibility system was implemented was so successful that local farmers are reportedly trying to collect as much manure as they can – even more than their set quotas – so that they can reap a larger harvest this year.
The field management system is an agricultural reform measure that shifted autonomy over agricultural products from the smallest units at cooperative farms to family units. A set proportion of the harvest is given to the state, while the rest can be kept by the farmers themselves. ......