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Duck Soup


Duck Soup


Siem Reap| Cambodia


Muskovy Duck Restaurant is located on the suburbs of Siem Reap, in an area not easy to reach for tourists unless somebody takes them there. Also in our case, it took quite a lot of time wandering on a dirt road, trying to ask for directions to people who were not really speaking English. Finally we found Sela, the founder of Muskovy Duck Restaurant, who speaks English and whose vision, contrary to the trail leading to his restaurant, is very simple and organic.

In our business there are 4 important values. The first is the environment. We reuse everything. Even water. Tissue, anything that is compostable, we make compost from. We use leftover cooking oil to light lanterns. We build walls and tables from bottles and plastic. The water for the plants is pumped with our special bicycle: you exercise and water comes out so the plants are happy.

The second value is our staff. I pay them fair salaries. Besides that I provide them accommodation, electricity, laundry soap, three meals per day, so they really can save some money for the future. I also teach them English.

Number three are the suppliers. I give seeds to the vegetable suppliers and when the vegetables grow I buy them for a higher price. The same with duck suppliers: I delivered baby ducks, they raise them and I buy for a good price. After a while they have their own baby ducks and they don’t need me anymore.

And the last one are customers. They have to come in groups, with family or with friends, we don’t serve food for a single person. In fact, the only dish we serve is Duck Soup. So people come in groups, socialize, they eat healthy food which come from Cambodian farmers, they know I treat the staff well. Everybody is satisfied and happy.

Clients, mostly local people, appreciate Sela’s hard work, his honesty and commitment in social and environmental changes. So many come, ensuring financial stability to Muscovy Duck Restaurant as well as the local farmers with whom the restaurant collaborates. Sela is thinking about opening the next location. But this is not his biggest success.

The way I see success is to have people around who will stay and grow together with me. Being successful is not about money. If you have money on your own, it’s not really a success. If the business grows but people are left behind without growing along, it’s not a success. For me success is to have my staff well paid, to have health insurance, to have some savings, to develop. If they decide to quit the job, they will still have some skills. If they want to open a new restaurant, I will support them, teach them. This is success for me. Let people grow and be independent.


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