GreenShoots Resources Organisation

GreenShoots is a Cambodia-based organisation that launched in March 2021.

GreenShoots aims to foster sustainable development through holistic programmes that combine economic development with food and agriculture. Aims include:

  • Building the capacity of young people and the local community
  • Establishing resilient landscapes
  • Going to the root of problems through active inquiry and community consultation.

A key problem the community faces now is biodiversity loss. Cambodia, with its lush tropical flora, is a biodiversity hotspot of Southeast Asia. Wild indigenous plants play many roles in Cambodian life: as food, medicine, and at times, the dwellings of different spirits. Yet, documentation of these plants is limited because of the destructive aftermath of the Khmer Rouge regime, when botanists were killed and entire library collections burned. What’s more, due to climate change up to 40 percent of this flora is set to be extinct by the end of the century.

GreenShoots, and its collaborators, want to address this problem by creating an online database of local wild and medicinal foods, which would enable it to:

  • Collect and consolidate existing information about how indigenous flora is used within Khmer cuisine, and traditional and folk medicine practices.
  • Turn the data into an ongoing series of open-access interactive digital essays in Khmer, French, and English.
  • Create a living library at the GreenShoots AgriTech Centre (a 0.5 hectare permaculture demonstration site in North West Cambodia) to complement the online database.

This project is in partnership with Dr. Ashley Dam whose PhD research focused on Khmer Traditional Medicine. In five years time they hope for the prototype of the proposed database to be populated by input from Khmer diaspora, chefs, botanists and anthropologists.

  • 2023
  • Intentional Projects
Photo: GreenShoots Resources Organisation