HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn visited the Camellia Oleifera (tea oil) tree plantation in Pang Mahan
On 17 February 2016, HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn visited the Camellia Oleifera (tea oil) tree plantation in Ban Pang Mahan, Mae Fah Luang district, Chiang Rai, to follow up on the progress of the project. The tea oil project - a joint project between Mae Fah Luang Foundation under Royal Patronage and Chaipattana Foundation – was initiated by the princess ten years ago to help restore depleted forest cover and provide a sustainable income for local communities.
The trees were grown from seedlings presented to HRH Princess Sirindhorn by the government of China. There are now a total of 952,008 trees in three plots which cover 3,650 rai in Ban Pang Mahan, Ban Puna and Ban Pha Mee villages in Mae Fah Luang district.
The trees can now be graded according to their productivity, as indicated by coloured flags on each tree, making it easier to review their potential as well as improve tea seed oil production. The project has also helped to revive the environment over the past 10 years, as evidenced by satellite images that show an additional 1,298 rai of revived forest cover in 2016, and no further forest encroachment.