Agricultural Extension section
The objectives of agricultural education and communication are to organize farmers’ training courses, disseminate agricultural information, and serve as the sole communication platform responsible for the serving the public.
To provide agricultural extension, we organized various levels of training courses (i.e., beginner, low, medium, and high level) at Farmers’ Academy and progressively planned and designed a series of courses based on what is required for farmers to perform their jobs. Equal weight was placed on theory and practice, and continued follow-ups and counseling were provided after completion of training. In addition, students were able to work on farms through internship programs to effectively develop work skills for the future. Furthermore, professional agricultural training related to our core technology was organized to develop local industries. This training included courses on production technology, processing of agricultural products, farm management, agricultural product marketing, and agricultural recreation, which elevated farmers’ cultivation techniques and operation management capabilities. Moreover, we provided counseling to promote 4-H education extension in Hualien and Yilan County.
To disseminate agricultural information, we issue Annual Report of Hualien District Agricultural Research and Extension Station, Research Report of Hualien District Agricultural Research and Extension Station, Agriculture Extension Bulletin of Hualien District, Hualien Agriculture Monthly, Hualien District Agricultural Technique Pamphlet, and Special Proceedings, to advertise new agricultural knowledge. We publish press releases, contact the media, or host press conference to promptly report our research achievements and release information on our promotional activities. An official website for the Hualien District Agricultural Research and Extension Station (hdares.moa.gov.tw) was created, featuring a complete collection of the research and development results of the local agricultural industry, as well as demonstration and extension data, effectively promoting our works and achievements. To follow the Web 2.0 trend, YouTube and Flickr were used to create the video and photo pages to share and interact with the public. Google Maps was used to develop the site map of the local agricultural recreation areas to promote agricultural tourism. In addition, themed pavilions for local key industries were constructed, which included pavilions featuring crops such as cat-tail willows, aquatic plants, green onions, bird’s nest ferns, pomelos, flowering quince, pumpkins, Salviae miltiorrhizae, kumquats, and Angelica acutiloba. Crop production and consumer information were systemically organized to be referenced and used by farmers and consumers. Of these themed pavilions, the pavilions featuring cat-tail willow, aquatic plants, green onion, pomelo, and pumpkin won the first place, and the Salviae miltiorrhizae pavilion won the second place. In response to the booming development of mobile communications, as well as the use of smart phones, the mobile application “The Way of Agriculture in Hualien and Yilan” was developed. This application enables the public to participate in in-depth organics-themed journeys and to remain updated on local agricultural information at all times.
To serve the public, a sole communication platform was established to answer questions by phone, e-mail, and in person. Our researchers can be consulted to provide technical services. The platform also receives groups of farmers visiting the station, and sells our publications. Open-day and other agricultural extension activities are hosted to raise public awareness of agricultural research and extension achievements.