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Preliminary study on low intensity tapping system with rainguard in a high rainfall area in Myanmar

Zar Ni Zaw, Sdoodee S., Lacote R.. 2016. In : CRRI, IRRDB. CRRI and IRRDB International Rubber Conference 2016, Siem Reap, Cambodia. Siem Reap : CRRI; IRRDB, p. 230-240. International Rubber Conference, 2016-11-21/2016-11-25, Siem Reap (Cambodge).

In Myanmar, natural rubber (Hevea brasiliensis) is mainly grown in the southern part of the country where the rainfall is high leading to suspending of tapping in the rainy season and intensive tapping after the rainy season. Rubber farmers face problems of uneven distribution of tapping days, unemployment of tappers in the rainy season, low tapper productivity, high tapping cost, and shorter economical lifespan of the trees. Implementing low intensity tapping system (LITS) with rainguard without suspending the tapping in the rainy season was assumed as a hypothesis solution to address the problems. Thus, a preliminary study was carried out by conducting an on-farm experiment to assess yield and socio-economic performances of five tapping systems in the area. Thus, five treatments: (T1) S/2 d2 (no tapping in the rainy season, no resting in the wintering period); (T2) S/2 2d3 (no tapping in the rainy season, no resting in the wintering period); (T3) S/2 (RG) d2 (tapping with rainguard in the rainy season, resting in the wintering period); (T4) S/2 d3 ET2.5% Pa1(1) 3/y (m) (tapping without rainguard in the rainy season, resting in the wintering period); (T5) S/2 (RG) d3 ET2.5% Pa1(1) 3/y (m) (tapping with rainguard in the rainy season, resting in the wintering period) were evaluated. Although the cumulative yield of LITS with rainguard, T5, was less than that of T3, it was comparable with that of T1 with its significant higher tapper productivity along the year. Its bark consumption is 16% and 39% lower than that of T1 and T3 respectively. T5 could reduce 33% and 50% of tapper requirement by T1 and T3 respectively. Tapping costs of T5 were lower than that of other treatments based on unit area and unit production. It enables the highest total tapper income along the year. Its operating profits to the owners were not the highest but were comparable to T1. The study confirms that an optimum yield could be harvested with low cost of production resulting in optimum income practically throughout the year by implementing the LITS with rainguard.

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