Farmers at Doi Lor have produced a spectacular crop of pumpkins this year and are doing a brisk trade exporting them, especially for the Chinese New Year celebrations, as they apparently symbolise bags of gold.
Over 500,000 pumpkins have been ordered, though only 300,000 have been available so far. Agricultural communities of Doi Lor say that they are the only place in Thailand producing these pumpkins, following works with researchers from Chiang Mai University who helped them develop the breed.
Whereas farmers say they used to sell these pumpkins for between 12-15 baht each, the Chinese New Year demands have pushed the prices up to between 50-100 baht per pumpkin. These pumpkins also apparently last for up to six months.
“These fancy pumpkins are so easy to grow and have no problems with pests or diseases,” Tanyarat Parame, a Doi Lor pumpkin grower told CityNews. “It takes only 55 days for them to be ready for harvest and with an investment of 5,000-8,000 baht per rai and an income of around 15,000 baht per rai, this is good business,” she explained. There are currently 80 rai of pumpkins being grown on Doi Lor.