A Life of Mixed Farming-Herding

2016-01-20

Cinematographers: Sinan Nima, Gerong Liqing (Villagers active in PCD’s programme in Jiangbo Village of Foshan Township, Dechen County, Yunnan Province)

Foshan Township in Dechen County, Yunnan Province is a traditional Tibetan community that practices farming as well as herding. Villagers graze their yaks and other livestock on the hills for milk and meat. Livestock manure is used to fertilise the land for the cultivation of hull-less barley, wheat and other crops. Thanks to this form of ecological recycling agriculture, the livelihood of Foshan villagers is environmentally-friendly. However, modernisation has had a big impact on communities that are engaged in this traditional way of farming. Now mostly only middle-aged and elderly people are found in Foshan. Young people are either in schools or have left to work in cities and towns where Tibetans live. Therefore in Foshan, there is a shortage of labour, and the community culture is at risk of disintegration. It is to this background that the villagers produce this video on their life of farming and herding. The purpose is to explore the ecological and cultural value of this form of economic life, and to help their community to reflect on whether they should preserve their traditional economic system.