Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009

FOOD SECURITY IN THAI SOCIETY* Sajin Prachason** 1. CONCEPT OF FOOD SECURITY 1.1 Food security in the global context 1.2 Food Security in the Thai context 2. THAILAND’S FOOD SECURITY IN THE PAST DECADE 2.1 Availability 1) 2) 3) 2.2 Access 1) 2) Access to nutritious and balanced diets Food access among vulnerable groups: - The rural poor - The urban poor 3) 4) 1) 2) 3) 4) 2.4 Stability 1) Deterioration of natural resources 2) Changing characteristics of food producers 3) Social movements: - Community right - Sustainable agriculture 4) Anti-GMO campaigns 3. CHALLENGES AND POLICY OPTIONS IN THE NEXT DECADE 3.1 Availability 1) Balancing food security and energy security 2) Minimizing the impacts of climate change 3) Research and Development in Appropriate Technology 3.2 Access 1) Developing information or database on food security 2) Promoting food access for the poor Role of markets and hyper markets Government’s policy to ensure food access Food hazards Bird flu outbreaks Food safety campaigns and linkages to agricultural policy Organic agriculture movements Food production and use Increasing role of imported food Food crops and energy crops

2.3 Utilization

1

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
- The urban poor - The rural poor 3.3 Utilization 1) Promoting organic food and agriculture 2) Dealing with imported food hazards 3.4 Sustainability 1) Recognizing the role of communities in resource management 2) Developing sustainable food supply chain

*This report is submitted to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Thailand as one of the six background papers for the drafting of Thailand Human Development Report 2009. For the full Human Development Report, “Human Security, Today and Tomorrow, please go to http://www.undp.or.th/resources/documents/20100510_2009_Thailand_Human_Development_Repor t.pdf **She is working at the Sustainable Agriculture Foundation (Thailand).

2

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
1. 1.1 CONCEPT OF FOOD SECURITY Food security in the global context Food security concept dated back to 1970s when the world faced oil price and food crisis 1 . The definition has evolved through time, reflecting the dynamics of people’s understanding on the complexity of the role of food in human society. The concept of “food security” first appeared in 1974 when the World Food Conference defined food security as a supply-sided problem of a nation or region 2 . In 1980s, the emergence of food entitlement concept, which regarded food as basic right, reshaped the meaning of food security. Food security was no longer only about availability but also accessibility and stability, and the focus of the analysis and policy advocacy has shifted to household and individual level 3 . More recently, community factors were given more emphasis because the economic, environmental and social contexts can determine the state of food security of individuals and households. This conceptualization enables the integration of important non-food issues such as social justice, self-reliance and community development, into the analysis of food security 4 . By 1999, there were as many as 200 definitions and 450 indicators of food security 5 ; but the most well-known and widely-adopted definition came from The World Food Summit (WFS) in 1996. Endorsed by over 180 countries, food security was defined as a situation “...when all people, at all

times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life". Aiming at global
changes, the WFS set a target to halve numbers of the hungry and the mulnutritious by 2015. Although it is unlikely to meet this target by the deadline, the WFS’ focus on food security has triggered more interests from policy makers to ensure food security by promoting livelihood of people at all levels 6 .

1

The City of Toronto, n.d., Chapter 1: Definitions of Food Security, p 20.

<http://www.toronto.ca/health/children/pdf/fsbp_ch_1.pdf, 10 October 2008>
2

Food and Agriculture Organization, 2006, “Food Security”, Policy Brief, June, Issue 2.

<ftp://ftp.fao.org/es/ESA/policybriefs/pb_02.pdf, 10 October 2008>
3

The City of Toronto, n.d., Chapter 1: Definitions of Food Security, p 22.

<http://www.toronto.ca/health/children/pdf/fsbp_ch_1.pdf, 10 October 2008>
4

The City of Toronto, n.d., Chapter 1: Definitions of Food Security, p 24.

<http://www.toronto.ca/health/children/pdf/fsbp_ch_1.pdf, 10 October 2008>
5

Hoddinott, 1999, cited in The City of Toronto. n.d. Chapter 1: Definitions of Food Security, p.20.

<http://www.toronto.ca/health/children/pdf/fsbp_ch_1.pdf, 10 October 2008>
6

Food and Agriculture Organization, n.d., “Food Security and Livelihoods”, Thematic Brief, FAO Livelihood Support Programme.

3

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Box 1: Four Dimensions of Food Security Dimensions of food security, which are linked together and sometimes overlapping, can be split into four components: availability, access, utilization and stability.

Food availability: The availability of sufficient quantities of food of appropriate quality,
supplied through domestic production or imports (including food aid).

Food access: Access by individuals to adequate resources (entitlements) for acquiring
appropriate foods for a nutritious diet. Entitlements are defined as the set of all commodity bundles over which a person can establish command given the legal, political, economic and social arrangements of the community in which they live (including traditional rights such as access to common resources).

Utilization: Utilization of food through adequate diet, clean water, sanitation and health
care to reach a state of nutritional well-being where all physiological needs are met. This brings out the importance of non-food inputs in food security.

Stability: To be food secure, a population, household or individual must have access to
adequate food at all times. They should not risk losing access to food as a consequence of sudden shocks (e.g. an economic or climatic crisis) or cyclical events (e.g. seasonal food insecurity). The concept of stability can therefore refer to both the availability and access dimensions of food security. Source: Food and Agriculture Organization, 2006, “Food Security”, Policy Brief, June, Issue 2. Food insecurity occurs “when people lack secure access to sufficient amounts of safe and nutritious food for normal growth and development and an active and healthy life”. Many factors contribute to food insecurity: unavailability of food, insufficient purchasing power, inappropriate distribution, and inadequate use of food at household level. Food insecurity can be chronic, seasonal or transitory, and can lead to poor nutrition situation 7 . The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has developed policy priorities called a “two-track approach” to address food insecurity in two mutually reinforcing situations under emergencies. The approach comprises of long term policies on sustainable agriculture and rural development; and short term policies targeting vulnerable groups, calling into attention risks and the management of risks 8 .

7

Food and Agriculture Organization, 2000, “Grossary”, Food Insecurity and Vulnerability Information and Mapping Systems.

<http://www.fivims.org/index.php?option=com_glossary&Itemid=31 , 12 October 2008>
8

Food and Agriculture Organization, 2006, “Food Security”, Policy Brief, June, Issue 2, p.3.

<ftp://ftp.fao.org/es/ESA/policybriefs/pb_02.pdf, 10 October 2008>

4

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Table 1 : FAO’s Policy Priorities for Food Security

Source: Food and Agriculture Organization, 2006, “Food Security”, Policy Brief, June, Issue 2. 1.2 Food security in the Thai context In the early 2008, food security entered a policy discussion in the wake of sudden surge of rice prices that followed soaring oil prices. The term “food security” by itself is quite new although the word has earlier appeared in some policy literatures. For example, the Department of Health and the World Health Organization (WHO)’s jointly-supported proposal of the National Strategic Plan on Food Security in 2002 aiming to establish the national food safety master plan under the Public Health Act 1992, used the term “food security” to refer to availability, accessibility, sufficiency and stability dimensions; and regarded it as important to the country’s economic and cultural security 9 .

9

Drafting Committee of the Strategic Plan, 2002, “Executive summary”, Strategic Plan Proposal on Food Security, under the

Establishment of Food Safety Master Plan for Domestic Consumer in Thailand under the Public Health Act, 1992, Supported by the Health Department and the World Health Organization, Bangkok.

5

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Traditionally, Thailand hardly experiences food shortages because most of the country’s consumption demand can be met through domestic production, with small import supplements. The agricultural sector has played an important role in supplying food, driving economic growth, and generating employment. During the agricultural boom years in the 1970s, large areas of uncultivated land were turned into farmlands. All National Economic and Social Development Plans have continuously aimed at raising productivity to meet domestic consumption and export markets 10 . Despite a shift towards industrialization in the 1980s that brought about biased policies against the agricultural sector, the country still occupies a prominent global position in many primary agricultural commodities and food items 11 such as rubber, canned pineapple, cassava, sugar, chicken, shrimp and canned tuna. Most of the debates on food security then focused on nutrition and safety issues. This was due to the dominance of public health policy makers and practitioners in the debates. In 1972, the National Food and Nutrition Plan was launched by the Ministry of Public Health and adopted for the first time in the 4th National Economic and Social Development Plan (1977-1981). In 1992, the National Food Commission was established, headed by high-ranking public health officials. The committee later approved the National Food Safety System and tasked the National Food Safety Committee to implement food safety policies in normal and crisis circumstances 12 , in line with a strategy set out by the WHO 13 . The latest institutional development was the enactment of the National Food Commission Act in 2008. The Act mandates the establishment of a national committee responsible for overseeing food issues including food security. Significant dynamics in food security concept took place after the 1997 economic crisis. The agricultural sector was outstanding for serving as a social safety net for unemployed people, thus lessening the economic and social impacts. According to a survey on Northeastern households whose members were laid-off during the crisis, about 40% of the returnees joined the agricultural

10

Office of National Economic and Social Development Board, 2004, An Assessment on Capacity and Living Quality

Development of Farmers in Sustainable Agriculture, Office of National Economic and Social Development Board Bangkok.
11

Ammar Siamwalla, 1996, “Thai Agriculture: From Engine of Growth to Sunset Status”, TDRI Quaterly Review, Volume 11,

No.4.
12

Ministry of Public Health, 1999, Proposals: National Food Safety Program, Nonthaburi. Strategy 1: Countries should develop their food safety policy integration with policies addressing food security, quality and 2004, “10-Points: Regional Strategy for Food Safety in the South-East Asia Region,

13

nutrition, and consistent with international requirements for participation in international trade. (see World Health Organization, http://www.searo.who.int/EN/Section314_4300.htm).

6

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
sector, while many more received economic support from families, whose earnings relied on two main sources: general wage labor and agriculture 14 . Another important context is a shift in trade negotiations from multilateral negotiations at the World Trade Organization (WTO) to bilateral negotiations (known as Free Trade Agreements: FTAs). This has immense impacts on food and agricultural policies. Increasing non-tariff trade barriers and intensified global trade competition highlights the need to reexamine and restructure the agricultural sector and the country’s food export policy. An interface between food and agricultural production policies is reflected in the adoption of trade objectives by the public health sector. In 1999, the National Food Safety Program clearly stated that, “…besides more effectiveness in domestic consumer protection, the National Food Safety Program can be the best bargaining tool in international food trade” 15 .

14

Pitaksit Chayapute, et al., 1999, “A Study on Economic and Social Conditions of Ultra Poor Households and Households with

Unemployed Members as a Result of Economic Crisis in the Northeastern Region”, ”In Narong Petprasert (ed.), Thai Poor

People in the Crisis, pp. 269, 273-275.
15

Ministry of Public Health, 1999, Proposals: National Food Safety Program, Nonthaburi, p. 6

7

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Box 2: Food Security by the MSDHS’s Human Security Indicators In 2004, the newly-established Ministry of Social Development and Human Security tasked a commission team to develop human security indicators in 11 dimensions, including food security based on UNDP (United Nations Development Programme)’s human security framework. The team identified 3 main indices and 7 indicators as follows. Index 2.1: Thai people have sufficient food to eat. Indicator 2.1.1: Having completed meals (by self-production, purchasing, acquiring from the nature or given by other people) Indicator 2.1.2: No malnutrition Index 2.2: Thai people consume safe food. Indicator 2.2.1: Consuming cooked meat. Indicator 2.2.1: Consuming food safe from chemical contamination. Index 2.3: Thai people do not over-consume food. Indicator 2.3.1: Not having risks on food and exercise. Indicator 2.3.1: Not believing and overconsumption of supplementary diet. Indicator 2.3.1: Not led to believe in frequent consumption of under-nutritious food. Unfortunately, the food security dimension was dropped later on for lack of data 16 . Source: Ministry of Development and Human Security, 2004, “Thai Human Security Standard Guideline”. <www.m-society.go.th/document/edoc/edoc_823.pdf, 6 October 2008> 2. 2.1 THAILAND’S FOOD SECURITY IN THE PAST DECADE Availability By and large, Thailand remains a strong agricultural exporting country despite the reduction of the agriculture share in the Gross Domestic Products (GDP) to about 10%. In the past few years, the role of imported food in the diet basket of Thai people has increased as a result of trade liberalization. Another important and recent consideration is how to achieve a balance between food supply and energy supply. 1) Food production and use Thailand’s food production has increased continuously with crops occupying the largest share of the production. The production of rice, a staple diet of Thai population, has also expanded. From 1997 to 2008, production of rice paddy has risen from almost 23 million tons to over 32 million

16

Ministry of Development and Human Security, 2006, “Thailand and Human Security: Positions and the Next Step”, Report of

the National Conference, 8-9 May, p. 14.

8

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
tons, and yield per hectare has increased from just above 2 tons to almost 3.3 tons (see Table 2). Half of the Thai rice supply goes to domestic market while the remainder is exported to various countries, making Thailand the number one rice exporter. Table 2: Paddy: Planted Area, Harvested Area, Production, and Yield Planted Area Year 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 (1000 ha) 10,004.64 10,157.64 10,365.34 10,078.57 10,833.35 10,388.17 10,479.26 10,900.25 10,623.31 10,621.34 10,699.61 10,550.14 Harvested Area (1000 ha) 9,794.75 9,625.68 9,774.09 9,745.09 10,193.90 9,514.14 9,513.30 9,865.32 9,997.23 9,970.42 10,133.85 9,992.28 Production (1000 metric tons) 22,772.76 23,907.76 23,581.64 24,947.54 28,487.41 27,051.95 29,336.70 29,299.04 29,387.01 29,792.05 30,014.00 32,772.20 Yield (kg/ha) 2,325 2,484 2,413 2,560 2,795 2,843 3,084 2,970 2,940 2,988 2,962 3,280

Source: Office of Agriculture Economics, “The Data of Thailand”, ASEAN Food Security Information System <http://afsis.oae.go.th/x_sources/index.php?country=thailand, 5 November 2008> Besides rice, many other agricultural and food products are also in excess supply (Table 3). In 2007, Thailand’s exports of rice, food crops, cassava, sugar, fruits, vegetables, vegetable oil, milk products, oil seeds and spices were estimated at almost 359 million baht. Unfortunately, the large export volume is not correlated with productivity. A concrete example is rice, of which productivity in 2007 was extremely low comparing with many countries in Asia and even lower than some of the poor neighbouring countries (see Table 5). From 1998-2007, paddy rice yields hardly increased. In 1998 and 2007, Thailand’s yields were only 65% of the world’s average. To rectify this situation, the government launched a structural adjustment strategy program for the agricultural sector in 2005, aiming to enhance the competitiveness of Thai agricultural products in international markets. The program divided agricultural commodities into 3 main groups: 1) rice, chicken, shrimp and rubber are classified as exporting cash crops; 2) fuel crops (e.g. palm oil and tapioca) are regarded as having business potentiality; and 3) fruits, garlic, onion and coffee are under the “need restructuring” category. The program then outlined different policy approaches and strategies for the three groups.

9

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Table 3: Production, Domestic Consumption and Export of Selected Food and Agricultural Products (million tons) Food Rice Sugar Pineapple Longan Durian Aquacultured Shrimp Production 30.93 7 2.25 0.50 0.74 0.5 Domestic Consumption 16.94 2 0.3 0.05 0.35 0.075

Source: “Thailand’s Food Security Strategies in Focus”, Prachatai, 2008. <www.prachatai.com/05web/th/home/1193, 29 October 2008> Table 4: Value of Selected Agricultural Exports, 2006-2007 (unit: 1,000 baht) Items Rice exports Food crops Cassava products Sugar and products Fruits and products Other food products Vegetables and products Vegetable oils Milk products Oil seeds Spices Total 2007* 119,215,430 18,660,006 48,640,194 48,796,711 48,067,448 30,078,533 21,846,913 12,662,974 9,164,185 1,114,615 721,166 358,968,175

*Excluded re-export Source: Office of Agricultural Economics, 2008. <http://www.oae.go.th/statistic/export/QVExp.xls, 15 October 2008> Table 5: Paddy Rice Yield in Selected Countries in Asia, 1998-2007 (tons/ha.) Cambodia 1.79 1.94 2.12 2.07 1.92 Indonesia 4.20 4.25 4.40 4.39 4.47 Malaysia 2.88 2.94 3.06 3.11 3.24 Myanmar 3.13 3.24 3.38 3.42 3.42 Philippines 2.70 2.95 3.07 3.19 3.28 Thailand 2.47 2.42 2.61 2.62 2.61

Year* 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002

World 3.82 3.89 3.88 3.94 3.85

China** 6.35 6.33 6.26 6.15 6.19

Laos 2.71 2.93 3.06 3.13 3.27

Vietnam 3.96 4.10 4.24 4.29 4.59

10

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Cambodia 2.10 1.98 2.48 2.49 2.36 Indonesia 4.54 4.54 4.57 4.62 4.69 Malaysia 3.36 3.33 3.31 3.34 3.38 Myanmar 3.55 3.78 3.62 3.76 3.98 Philippines 3.37 3.51 3.59 3.68 3.76 Thailand 2.65 2.86 2.96 2.91 2.69

Year* 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007

World 3.94 4.03 4.08 4.12 4.15

China** 6.06 6.31 6.25 6.25 6.35

Laos 3.14 3.28 3.49 3.35 3.50

Vietnam 4.64 4.86 4.88 4.89 4.87

*Calendar year when the harvest takes place. **Includes Taiwan. Source: FAO, n.d., cited in International Rice Research Institute, 2009, IRRI World Rice Statistics. <http://beta.irri.org/statistics/images/stories/wrs/wrs_nov08_table03_yield.xls, 4 February 2009> 2) Increasing role of imported food

Thailand’s international trade has expanded rapidly after 2003. This is partly due to the government’s policy to expand external demands through FTAs. By 2008, Thailand has already concluded FTAs with China, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Bahrain, India with more agreements under negotiation. An impact assessment of the Thai-Chinese FTA that went into effect in late 2003, showed a steep increase in vegetables imported from China between 2001 and 2006, from 241 million baht to 2,563 million baht or a 961% increase. For fruits, import jumped from 1,010 million baht in 2001 to 3,530 million baht in 2006, a 249% increase. A large part of the import was carrots, fresh turnip, apples, pears, quinces and grapes (Figures 1 and 2) 17 . Although it is true that the increase in imported fruits and vegetables from China took place even before the FTA as a result of China’s entry into the WTO, the FTA played a role in accelerating this trend. These figures converged with FAO data that showed the Thai people’s consumption trend of selected fruits and vegetables (See Figure 3). Figure 1 shows an upward trend for apple, grape, broccoli and carrot, largely imported from abroad, but a significant drop for onions and other vegetables 18 .

17

Faculty of Economics, Kasetsart University et al, 2008, Impacts of Thailand-China Free Trade Agreement (Under ASEAN-

China Framework) and Adjustment in Fruit and Vegetable Agribusiness System, Final Report No. 1, Report submitted to the
Office of Knowledge Management and Development, p. 30-31.
18

Faculty of Economics, Kasetsart University et al, 2008, Impacts of Thailand-China Free Trade Agreement (Under ASEAN-

China Framework) and Adjustment in Fruit and Vegetable Agribusiness System, Final Report No. 1, Report submitted to the
Office of Knowledge Management and Development, p. 31.

11

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Figure 1: Import of Vegetables from China, 2001-2006 Value (Baht) มูลคา ( บาท)
700,000,000 600,000,000 500,000,000 400,000,000 300,000,000 200,000,000 100,000,000 0

การนําเข าผักและผลิ ตภัณฑจ ากประเทศจี น ป 2544-2549

ป
2001 2544 2002 2545 2003 2546 2004 2547 2005 2548 2006 2549
Fresh carrot and turnip แคร รอตและเทอร นิปสด Mushroom (Agaricus) เห็ ดชนิดมัชรูมในตระกู ลอะการิคส ั Fresh or chilled garlic กระเทีย มสดหรือแชเ ย็น Fresh or chilled onion (new) หอมหัวใหญ สด หรือแชเ ย็น(ใหม) Other dryงmushroom เห็ ดอืน ่ ๆแห Fresh or chilled cauliflower and กะหล่ ําดอกและบรอกโคลี สดหรือแช เ ย็น broccoli Ear mushroom เห็ดหูหนู

Source: Faculty of Economics, Kasetsart University et al, 2008, Impacts of Thailand-China Free Trade Agreement (Under ASEAN-China Framework) and Adjustment in Fruit and Vegetable Agribusiness System, Final Report No. 1, Report submitted to the Office of Knowledge Management and Development, p. 31. Figure 2: Import of Fruits from China, 2001-2006
มูลคา ((baht) บาท) Value
1,800,000,000 1,600,000,000 1,400,000,000 1,200,000,000 1,000,000,000 800,000,000 600,000,000 400,000,000 200,000,000 0 ป

การนําเขาผลไมจากประเทศจีน ป 2544-2549

2001 2544

2002 2003 2545 2546 Apple 1 แอปเปล สด Grape 3 องุ นสด Mandarin 5 ส มแมนดารินอื่น ๆ สดหรือแหง

20042547

2005 2548

2006 2549

2 Fresh แพรและควิ นซ สด pears and quince 4 Fresh ลูกนัตอื่น ๆสดหรื อแห ง or chilled nuts

12

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Source: Faculty of Economics, Kasetsart University et. al, 2008, Impacts of Thailand-China Free Trade Agreement (Under ASEAN-China Framework) and Adjustment in Fruit and Vegetable Agribusiness System, Final Report No. 1, Report submitted to the Office of Knowledge Management and Development, p. 32.

Figure 3: Fruit and Vegetable Consumption in Thailand by Type, 1997-2005 (unit: gram/person/day)
3.5 3.0 1.52 2.5 2.0 1.5 1.0 1.40 0.5 0.0 40 41 97 98 42 99 43 00 44 01 45 02 46 03 47 04 48 05 1.36 40 1.48 1.56

1.44

97 41 98

42

99

43

00

44

01

45

02

46

03

47

04

48

05

A P P LE

BROCCOLI

1.6 1.4 1.2 1.0 0.8 0.6 0.4 0.2 0.0 40 41 98 42 9943 0044 0145 02 46 03 47 04 48 05 97 C AR R O T

3.2 3.0 2.8 2.6 2.4 2.2 2.0 40 41 97 98 42

99

43

00

44 01

45 02

46

03

47

04

48

05

GRAPE

12.8 12.4

35 30

12.0 11.6 11.2 20 10.8 10.4 10.0 10 9.6 9.2 5 40 41 15 25

97 98

99

42

00

43

01

44

02

45

03

46

04

47

05

48

40

97 98

41

42

99

00

43

01

44

02

45

46

03

47

04

05

48

O N IO N

OTHER_VE T

Source: Food and Agriculture Organization, 2008, cited in Faculty of Economics, Kasetsart University et. al, 2008, Impacts of Thailand-China Free Trade Agreement (Under ASEAN-China Framework) and Adjustment in Fruit and Vegetable Agribusiness System, Final Report No. 1, Report submitted to the Office of Knowledge Management and Development, p. 15.

13

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
3) Food crops and energy crops A surge in oil prices in the 2000s has prompted the Thai government to find quick and less expensive alternatives to fossil fuel. At the same time, continuous falling prices of farm produces discouraged many farmers from investing in their farms. Differences in net returns between 2003 and 2007 reflected the boom and bust of food and energy crops. Rice and longan had declining net return per rai (1 rai is approximately 0.16 hectare) while fuel crops like corns, rubber, sugarcane, cassava and palm oil drew substantial increase in net return (Table 6). A projection of Thai agro-fuel demand expected more than 100% increase in 2007 over the previous year, thanks to the introduction of E20, and the implementation of B2 requirement 19 . This rapid demand together with the government’s promotion has attracted many rice farmers to the fuel crop program. Table 6: Cash crops’ rate of return per rai, 2003 and 2007 Crops 2003 Seasonal rice Non-seasonal rice Corn Longan Rubber Sugarcane Tapioca Palm oil 623 1,472 755 340 4,776 248 292 4,964 Net return (Baht/ rai) 2007 346 978 1,411 - 1,045 9,499 1,130 1,305 4,070

Source: Office of Agricultural Economics, cited in Detcharut Sukkamnoed, 2008, “Food and Energy Crisis: Road to the Balance”. In southern provinces, where most of the palm oil plantations are located, the forecast of rapidly rising demand for palm oil used in biodiesel industry in the wake of the soaring oil prices has led to further encroachment of palm oil plantation into empty rice fields and wetland. The

19

“Thai Oil Palm Pilot Crop Ready For Harvest; May Replace Tangerine Crops Wiped Out By Viruses”, Biofuels Digest, 19 May

2008. <http://www.biofuelsdigest.com/blog2/2008/05/19/thai-oil-palm-pilot-crop-ready-for-harvest-may-replace-tangerinecrops-wiped-out-by-viruses/, 15 November 2008>

14

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
government is also supporting farmers in 14 Southern provinces to transform 4.38 million rai of existing rubber plantation into palm oil plantation 20 . In northeastern provinces, some farmers began to grow cassava in their rice fields during post harvest. They were introduced to a new variety of cassava, which supposed to give yields in only 6 month period, but later found that such claim was exaggerated. Unlike the South, northeastern farmers are not familiar with palm oil cultivation as it was recently introduced to the area. Despite the lack of evidence supporting successful cultivation of palm oil in a dry area like the Northeast, many farmers decided to give it a try because they were enticed by the prospect of high rate of return, and frustrated with low rate of return fetched by food crops plus repeatedly failed harvests. Unfortunately, most of the palm oil investment does not yield positive outcome 21 .

Photo: Harvested Tapioca in a Rice Field (Source: Prachatham)

Two subcommittees were set up to promote the production of ethanol and biodiesel and several billion Baht was allocated to subsidize the production. The Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives’ five-year plan (2008-2011) targets to expand palm oil cultivated land to 6 million rai and to raise the productivity of sugarcane and cassava production 22 . The popularity of fuel crops has led to expanded private investments. For instance, the Mae Sot Clean Energy, a joint venture between the Phadaeng Industry and Thai Oil and Petrogreen, is constructing a sugarcane ethanol facility in the Mae Sot district of Tak 23 .

20

Sayamol Kaiyoorawong, “From Commercial Forest Plantation Policy to Fuel Crop Policy: Food Security in the Southern

Region”, Paper Presented at the Public Conference on Fuel Crop and Rubber Policies: Opportunities and Risks of Farmers, 1719 October 2008, p. 19. <http://www.sathai.org/images/Story_thai/022-pic/Annex1.pdf, 18 December 2008>
21

“Northeastern Farmers Growing Tapioca in Rice Fields Were Not Convinced in Yields”, Prachatham, 26 May 2008,

<http://www.newspnn.com/V2008/detail.php?code=n1_26052008_01, 17 October 2008>
22

“Government Pours 25 Billion Baht Loan for Fuel Crop Plantation”, Naew Nar, 19 May 2008. “Thai Oil Palm Pilot Crop Ready For Harvest; May Replace Tangerine Crops Wiped Out By Viruses”, Biofuels Digest, 19 May

23

2008. <http://www.biofuelsdigest.com/blog2/2008/05/19/thai-oil-palm-pilot-crop-ready-for-harvest-may-replace-tangerinecrops-wiped-out-by-viruses/, 15 November 2008>

15

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Box 3: Rice Crisis in 2008 Around the world, there were concerns over the shift from food crop to fuel crop to take advantage of increasing demand for alternative energy. In Thailand, the food-energy security dilemma was not publicly debated until rice prices started to rise in late 2007. Within 3 months in early 2008, the price of 100% white rice surged from 1,340 baht to 2,740 baht per 100 kilograms in domestic market and from $466 per ton to $894 per ton in international market at FOB price. (Table 7). Table 7 : Changes in prices of Thai rice, February-April 2008 2008 100% white rice 100% (bath per 100 kg.) 13 February 2008 12 March 2008 23 April 2008 1,340 1,650 2,740 100% white rice 100% (at FOB price; US dollars per ton) 466 604 894

Source Thai Rice Miller Association and Thai Rice Exporters Association, cited in Vitoon Panyakul, 2008, “Rice Supply Chain: Opportunities in the Crisis, or Crisis in opportunities”, Powerpoint presentation at a conference on Food Crisis, Thai Economy Crisis: Expensive Rice, Farmers Gained Benefits?”, Thai Consumer Foundation, 28 April 2008. A number of factors were responsible for this unprecedented phenomenon. They are crop failure in major rice exporting countries, declining global rick stock, and panic in the market. Increased corn cultivation in the US and other countries for ethanol industries was at the expense of wheat production, leading to dual price rises of wheat and rice as a substitution to wheat 24 . Such situation adversely affected poor people in many countries. Riots broke out in some countries. In April 2008, the Thai cabinet decided to tackle the food and energy crisis. Several subcommittees were set up. There were proposals to establish a zoning system for food crop and fuel crop. No concrete action was taken due to political instability and the sharp drop of oil and rice prices in late 2008.

2.3

Access Food access is a very important issue as food sufficiency does not guarantee adequate food

access for every one. In Thailand, although food is available in abundance, some level of food inaccessibility and malnutrition still persists in some population segments including infants and young children in rural areas, the urban poor, and landless farmers. Food access at individual or household level is not only a function of purchasing power. It also involves several economic and social factors.

24

“Understanding the Global Rice Crisis”, Business Week, Economics and Policy, April 28, 2008.

16

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Food accessibility has become more complicated as Thais have become more dependent on the markets, and large food distributors are becoming influential actors in the food system. 1) Access to nutritious and balanced diets Since 1980s, incidence of malnutrition fell dramatically thanks to poverty alleviation programs aimed at reducing protein-energy malnutrition, vitamin A deficiency and iodine deficiency. The programs included nutrition surveillance, supplementary feeding among young children, nutrition education, primary health care and production of nutritious food 25 . Mild and moderate underweight in children under five years old was brought down sharply from 48% in 1982 to 9% in 1998, while severe underweight fell from 2% in 1982 to an insignificant level. The government later shifted to tackle a broader issues to improve the overall nutrition and living quality of the people, such as the production of diversified foods for home consumption, fortification of instant noodle by adding vitamin A, iron and iodine, mandatory nutrition labeling of food products, and monitoring, surveillance and feeding program for children under five and primary school children 26 . In 2003, a food and nutrition survey conducted by the Ministry of Public Health revealed that people aged 15-59 years old had adequate energy based on the Dietary Reference Intake for Thais (DRI) with daily energy consumption ranged approximately 1,300-1,500 kilocalories. The highest and lowest energy ratio was found in the Northeast and the Central respectively. Average protein intake was 54 grams, which reached 99% of the reference level. One-third of this protein was animal protein. 27 . In 2000, an average Thai consumed over 30 kilograms of fish and seafood products. Consumption of chicken, pork and beef rose by 2.97%, 2% and 1.53% respectively 28 . Table 8: Energy and protein from one-day food consumption compared with DRI of people aged 15-29 years old by region Energy and diet intake Total % of the Dietary Reference 75.7 99.2 Central % of the Dietary Reference 68.9 95.3 North % of the Dietary Reference 76.0 97.3 Northeast % of the Dietary Reference 80.7 102.2 South % of the Dietary Reference 77.6 101.9

Energy (kilocalorie) Protein

Source: Extracted from Ministry of Public Health, 2003, A Survey on Food and Nutrition of Thailand, the 5th Assessment, p. 158.
25

Food and Agriculture Organization, 2000, The State of Food Insecurity in the World 2000, p. 23. Food and Agriculture Organization, 2000, The State of Food Insecurity in the World 2000, p. 23-24. Ministry of Public Health, 2003, A Survey on Food and Nutrition of Thailand, the 5th Assessment, p. 147. Cited in Somying Piumsombun, 2003, “The Impact of International Fish Trade on Food Security in Thailand”, Report of the

26

27

28

Expert Consultation on International Fish Trade And Food Security, FAO Fisheries Report, No. 708, Rome. <http://www.fao.org/DOCREP/006/Y4961E/y4961e0j.htm, 20 October 2008>

17

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009

Table 9: Thailand’s per capita consumption (kilograms) of animal protein, 1980-2000 Year 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 Average annual increase (%) Pork 6.83 7.05 8.45 8.04 7.06 7.32 1.53 Beef 2.12 2.12 2.13 2.11 2.07 2.05 -0.39 Chicken 10.00 10.90 11.50 10.78 11.25 10.70 2.00 Fish and Seafood 32.40 31.70 25.58 29.05 31.48 32.74 2.97

Source: Office Of Agricultural Economics and Department of Fisheries, cited in Somying Piumsombun, 2003, “The Impact Of International Fish Trade On Food Security In Thailand”, Report Of The Expert Consultation On International Fish Trade And Food Security, FAO Fisheries Report, No. 708, Rome. <http://www.fao.org/DOCREP/006/Y4961E/y4961e0j.htm, 20 October 2008> Nevertheless, malnutrition persisted among children under five years old. Pregnant and breast-feeding women still had iodine-deficiency anemia and vitamin B1-deficiency. Interestingly, the nature of the problem began to change as over-nutrition and overweight also became prevalent in all ages, especially among female adults aged 30-59 years old in urban areas. Obesity is linked to many non-communicable diseases; for instance, diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol, which are the main causes of death of Thai population, especially among aged population in urban areas 29 . Overweight problem also affected the children. Some had higher blood pressure than adults (See Figure 4). In Nakhon Pathom and Bangkok, obesity in children was found to be associated with highincome families or mothers who were overweight during pregnancy 30 .

29

Ministry of Public Health, 2003, A Survey on Food and Nutrition of Thailand, the 5th Assessment, pp. 313-316. Uruwan Yamorisut and et. al., 2006, “Factors Associated with Dual Form of Malnutrition in School Children in Nakhon

30

Pathom and Bangkok”, Journal of the Medical Association of Thailand, 89 (7), July.

18

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Figure 4: Obesity and high blood pressure in students grade 1-6 Weight

Underweight 2%

High blood pressure

Normal 5%

Source: Mahidol University, 2004, cited in Institute for Population and Social Research Mahidol University and Thai Health Promotion Foundation, Thai Health 2005, p.25. 2) Food access among vulnerable groups

Despite improving nutrition, not a small part of the population still have limited food accessibility. This is shown by the substantial share of food items in household income. Table 10 shows that over half of Thai people spent 21-60% of their income on food. About 35% of the population spent 60% or more of their income on food. The means that as food prices rises or income drops, this group will be exposed to food insecurity. The most vulnerable group – those who spent 80% or more of their income on food – was largely located in the rural areas in all regions. Despite their proximity to the agricultural production base, rural residents face higher risk of food insecurity than urban residents. Table 10: Households’ food expenditure in total income per annum Number of households (%) Food share in total income (%) Less than 21 21-40 11.7 26.9 11.4 26.9 11.7 26.9 Total Total Urban Rural

19

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009

Number of households (%) Food share in total income (%) 41-60 61-80 More than 80

Total Total Urban Rural

26.0 19.1 16.4

29.0 21.3 11.3

25.1 18.4 17.9

Source: Extracted from Ministry of Public Health, 2003, A Survey on Food and Nutrition of Thailand, the 5th Assessment, p. 60.

Box 4: Thailand’s Development of Food Insecurity and Vulnerability Mapping Systems (FIVIMS)* The Thai government, supported by the FAO’s Asia FIVIMS project, developed the National Food Insecurity and Vulnerability Mapping System (FIVIMS) as part of its commitment to the World Food Summit in 1996. The system was launched in 1997. It was later integrated in the regular national budget program in 2003, under the coordination of the Office of Agricultural Economics 31 . The map identifies vulnerable population in different parts of the country. The Thai FIVIMS classifies 76 provinces into 3 clusters based on food security and nutrition. Each cluster is divided into sub-groups (class) of provinces.

The first cluster, classified as the most vulnerable, is located in the Northeastern and the Northern regions. Population are characterized by high rate of low birth weight, underweight in children under 5 years old, and prevalence of iodine deficiency, in addition to other vulnerability factors such as low per capita income, high rate of inactive members and land ownership problems. This cluster is illustrated in red and pink colors. Provinces in the second cluster are in the Central, the East, the West and the South of the country. These provinces have more favorable environments for food security and nutrition with higher per capita income. But there are some vulnerability factors. This cluster is illustrated in yellow and ample green. The last cluster is the least vulnerable group, consisting of the remaining provinces in the

31

Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives, n.d., “FIVIMS in Thailand”

<http://www.fivims.org/index2.php?option=com_content&do_pdf=1&id=45, 14 October 2008>

20

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Central, the East, the West and the South of the country. Under this cluster, the population have higher-than-national average income. There are also some negative factors in terms of food security. The cluster is illustrated in dark and light green. Source: Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives, 2005, “The Results of the Thailand Analysis”, <http://www.asiafivims.net/thailand/fivims/analysis.htm, 10 October 2008> *For elaboration on indicators, see Nutrition Division, 2006, “Area-Based Data”, http://nutrition.anamai.moph.go.th/temp/main/content.php?group=4 (1) The Rural Poor In 2007, the number of the poor was estimated at 5.4 million or 8.5% of the

Poverty has decreased over the past decade, with an exception of a brief period following the 1997 economic crisis. population. A large part of the poor lived in the rural area and are involved in agricultural sector, either as farmer or agricultural worker. Northeastern and Northern regions have the highest numbers of poor population. The characteristics of poor households are small land tenure, low education, large family, and large number of dependants 32 . In 2000, 55% of the poor or almost 5 million people were farmers. Together with farm workers, approximately 70% of the country’s poor was in the agricultural sector. Farmers and farm workers are poor as they face many difficulties, many of which are structural, such as low bargaining power, low farm prices, high input cost, crop failure, lack of financial credits. Poverty among farmers is a stark contrast to the facts that Thailand is the top rice exporting country. This is because domestic paddy prices are determined by the global market. 33 Aside from qualitative factors such as moisture content, farm gate prices are based on the prices taken by rice millers and exporters. Farmers are price takers at the end of the reversed supply chain. The more farmers invest in agricultural chemicals to boost the production, the more they expose themselves to financial risks. Poverty and food security are not related in a straightforward manner because farmers are food producers, who have the ability to feed themselves despite financial constraints. This does not include landless farmers who are more exposed to food insecurity than farmers who work on their land.

32 33

Office of National Economic and Social Development Board, 2002, “The Poor: New Opportunities for Self-Reliance”.

The Agricultural Futures Trading Commission, 2007, “Structure of Domestic Rice Market” <http://www.aftc.or.th/itc/products_analyze_price_16.php?id=58&fgrp_id=5&fmnu_id=18, 4 February 2009>

21

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Land is an important factor. According to NESDB, poverty was prevalent among farmers owning less than 5 rai of land 34 . Land is one of the most fundamental capitals needed to generate food and income. In times of crisis, land-owning farmers can cope with external shocks better than landless farmers 35 . In 1999, there were 543,942 landless farming households that worked on rented farm land. 969,355 households worked on their own land and rented land. These figures implied that over 1.5 million households could be vulnerable to food insecurity 36 . Better economic status does not always guarantee better food security situation. A study of poverty among farming households revealed that poor farm households had higher food security ratio than those with higher income. This is because the former had higher capacity to produce and acquire food from their own farms. The figures below showed that farmers earning less than 15,000 baht per year had 26% food security while those earning more 15,000 and 20,000 baht per year had 23% and 14% food security respectively. In another study, the author investigated food security situation among households of different economic status in Nan province in the North and found that despite poverty, the poorest in the village could gain access to food via natural resources and social network. For example, the poor might work on other people’s land in exchange for rice or obtain rice from their relatives, neighbors or social institutions, e.g. temple. Old people had good social status. They were often offered particular types of food such as fruits, vegetables, seasoning, and meat by other members in the communities. Interestingly, those of moderate economic status had larger variety of food than the village rich, primarily because the former had both the capacity to buy food from the market and the capacity to acquire food that was not available in the market from the nature. 37 . Table 11: Poor farming households’ income sources and food security ratio, 2006 (baht/person) Annual income equal or less than 15,000 baht/ person 12,835 Annual income more than 15,000 baht/ person/ year 22,243 Annual income more than 20,000 baht 55,001

Total income

34

Office of the National Economic and Social Development Board, 2007, Poverty Assessment Report, Chapter 3, p. 12. See the case of garlic farmers in Faculty of Economics, Kasetsart University et. al, 2008, Impacts of Thailand-China Free

35

Trade Agreement (Under ASEAN-China Framework) and Adjustment in Fruit and Vegetable Agribusiness System, Final Report
No. 1, Report submitted to the Office of Knowledge Management and Development, p. 57.
36

Prapart Pintobtang, 2007, “Proposals on Social Welfare Development for Farming Communities”, Research project on Social

Safety Net: Fundamental to Equity, Final report submitted to the National Economic and Social Advisory Council, part 2, p. 14
37

Piyanrt Imdee, 2004, Food security of rural community : a case study of Pa-Kha Village, Suak Sub-District, Muangnan

District, Nan Province , Master Thesis, Thammasart University.

22

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Annual income equal or less than 15,000 baht/ person (100 %) 5,144 (40 %) 6,252 (49 %) 1,439 (11 %) 26 Annual income more than 15,000 baht/ person/ year (100 %) 7,486 (34 %) 13,009 (58 %) 1,748 (8 %) 23 Annual income more than 20,000 baht (100 %) 19,916 (36 %) 33,516 (61 %) 1,569 (3 %) 14

Farm income Non-farm income Consumption of farm products Food security rate (%)*

Source: Graduate School of Kasertkart University, 2006, A Study on Poverty in Farming Households, A report submitted to the Office of Agricultural Economics, Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives * Food security is the household’s food consumption acquired from its own farm, measured by utilization rate of farm consumption. The higher the utilization rate, the higher the food security of the household. The utilization rate of farm consumption Value of farm products used for household’s consumption x 100 Value of farm products used for household’s consumption plus food expenditure

=

There are different approaches to promote food security among farm households. The government’s traditional approach is to raise farmers’ monetary income by improving market access and increasing productivity through chemical inputs, new seeds and technology. Since 1970s, an alternative to chemical-based mono-cropping has been pursued by the sustainable agriculture movement. Today, such movement has grown in strength and several variations of sustainable agriculture including organic agriculture, integrated agriculture, forestry agriculture, have been advocated and experimented in several parts of the country. In 2004, the Office of National Economic and Social Development Board (NESDB) conducted a study in 12 provinces and discovered that 79% of farmers under the study felt that they had low or moderate food sufficiency while practicing conventional chemical-based agriculture; only 9% said they had high level of food sufficiency. After shifting to sustainable agriculture, the percentage of farmers feeling that they have high food sufficiency jumped to 62%. Moreover, 66% of farmers felt they had better quality and variety of food, compared with only 10% under the chemical-based agriculture (Table 12). On average, household food expenses decreased by 30%. 38 Table 12: Food security before and after shifting to sustainable agriculture Numbers of farmers (%) Level High Before shifting to sustainable agriculture Food sufficiency Food quality and variety 9.2 10 After shifting to sustainable agriculture Food sufficiency Food quality and variety 62.3 66.2

38

Office of National Economic and Social Development Board, 2004, An Assessment on Capacity and Living Quality

Development of Farmers in Sustainable Agriculture, pp. 55-57.

23

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Numbers of farmers (%) Level Moderate Low Before shifting to sustainable agriculture Food sufficiency Food quality and variety 41.5 43.8 37.7 34.6 After shifting to sustainable agriculture Food sufficiency Food quality and variety 27.7 25.4 1.5 -

11.5 11.5 8.5 8.5 Not indicated 100 100 100 100 Total farmers Source: Office of National Economic and Social Development Board, 2004, An Assessment on Capacity and Living Quality Development of Farmers in Sustainable Agriculture, p 57. The New Theory proposed by H.M. The King is also based on the principle of self-reliance specially among the farm sector. According to the theory, food security can be achieved at household level through diversifying crops, building water storage, expanding farming activities to cover aquaculture and husbandry. In practical terms, land use is divided into 30:30:30:10 for the purposes of digging up small ponds, growing rice, cultivating field crops or orchards, and housing. The theory received immense interests from the government and the public. Box 5: Free trade and food security for garlic farmers In 2003, Thailand and China agreed to implement the free trade agreement on fruits and vegetables. When the agreement went into effect, import and export tariffs of the two countries would be brought down to zero. Immediately, garlic farmers became victims of an influx of cheaper and bigger garlic from China, the world’s number one garlic producer. Many farmers were not aware of the FTA and were in shock. In the North where most of garlic production is based, many farmers continue to grow garlic after years of price fluctuation and the FTA because garlic is the main source of households’ income. Garlic cultivation is also regarded by most farmers as the way of life that they have been practicing for generations. The low price and lack of demand severely affects income security of garlic farmers especially poor ones. As a result of decreasing garlic prices, a garlic farmer in Chiang Mai province had to sell parts of her wooden house to raise enough money for her child’s tuition. Although some argued that the FTA was not the main reason for the plummeting garlic prices, garlic farmers insisted that they noticed worsening market situations compared with pre-FTA period. In any case, a study concluded that the FTA was a turning point in the production, marketing, and consumption of garlic and several other agricultural produces. This is because it would have profound and long-term repercussion on the Thai agriculture, much more than any of the government’s agricultural policies. 39

39

See Food and Agriculture Organization, 2008, cited in Faculty of Economics, Kasetsart University et. al, 2008, Impacts of

Thailand-China Free Trade Agreement (Under ASEAN-China Framework) and Adjustment in Fruit and Vegetable Agribusiness System, Final Report No. 1, Report submitted to the Office of Knowledge Management and Development, p. 31 and 109.

24

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
(2) The urban poor

A large part of the urban poor are people living in slum communities and informal workers. Despite their obvious vulnerability, their food-related situation is rarely documented. This may be due to the fact that food is secondary to their other problems such as housing, basic infrastructures and working conditions. According to the Community Organizations Development Institute, in 2003 there were approximately 5,500 low-income urban communities with 8.25 million people living in poor conditions and often insecure housing. 40 In Bangkok alone, it was estimated to have 1,200 slum communities in 2004 41 . A survey on food situation of poor households in urban areas reported that in 2003 only 44% of the urban poor thought they had secured food access while the rest expressed some level of concerns (see Table 13). Among the latter, 14% and 3% could be classified as having moderate and severe hunger respectively. Moreover, many people had an average intake of only 1,200 calories per day, compared with 2,000 calories/day for women aged 20-59 years recommended by the Ministry of Public Health. The study pinpointed two major factors accountable for food insecurity, namely lack of disposable income at the end of the month and lack of time for cooking. Further investigation concluded that employment was not sufficient to ensure food security for the urban poor. Regardless of the numbers of employed members of the household, they are unlikely to have full time jobs and regular income. This makes them worried about insufficient food. According to a survey of low-wage urban communities by NSO in 2006, over half of urban poor households had low level of income of less than 1,501 baht per week or 6,004 baht per month 42 . When the food prices or other costs of living rise, women in the family are likely to be affected the most as they would cut their meals or eat less to save food for their children and the other family members 43 .

40

Somsook Boonyabancha, 2005, “Scaling Up Slums And Squatter Settlements Upgrading In Thailand Leading To Community-

Driven Integrated Social Development At City-Wide Level”, Paper Presented at the Arusha Conference on New Frontiers of Social Policy, 12-15 December 2005, p. 4. <http://siteresources.worldbank.org/INTRANETSOCIALDEVELOPMENT/Resources/Boonyabanchapaper.rev.1.pdf, 8 December 2008>
41

“In the Frame”. Siam Turakij, 1 June 2005. <http://news.utcc.ac.th/content/view/349/13/, 18 December 2008> National Statistical Office of Thailand , 2006,”Summary of the Population and Social Survey on Low-Income Urban

42

Communities 2006”, <http://service.nso.go.th/nso/nsopublish/service/survey/income_49.pdf, 16 December 2008>
43

See Noppawan Piaseu and Pamela Mitchell, 2004, “Household Food Insecurity Among Urban Poor in Thailand”, Journal of

Nursing Scholarship, Volume 36, Issue 2.

25

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Table 13: Distribution of households by food security status Description Food security situation • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • Food secure Food insecure with no hunger Food insecurity with moderate hunger Food insecure with severe hunger 88 78 27 6 44.2 39.2 13.6 3.0 Numbers of households Percentage (%)

Description of food eaten in the household Always enough Enough but not always Sometimes not enough Often not enough 64 115 10 10 32.2 57.8 5.0 5.0

Reasons for not having enough food Affordability Time Quality of food Health problems Too difficult to get food On a diet Availability No working stove available Others 96 55 15 13 12 9 2 1 4 71.1 43 11.1 9.6 8.9 6.7 1.5 0.7 2.0

Source: Noppawan Piaseu and Pamela Mitchell, 2004, “Household Food Insecurity among Urban Poor in Thailand”, Journal of Nursing Scholarship, Volume 36, Issue 2 3) Role of markets and hypermarkets

Ways and means to access food have changed during the past decade. People in the rural areas become more dependent on the market and less dependent on food acquired from the nature. From 1996 to 2000, the number of so-called mobile markets (Talad-nut, similar to weekend market) and other temporary markets increased from 995 to over 3,125. In line with the government’s policy to promote tourism industry to earn hard currencies after 1997, the number of food shops and restaurants also rose quickly. But only a small number of markets and food establishments achieved the health standard set by the Health Department 44 .

44

Nutrition Plan Formulation Subcommittee, National Nutrition Committee, 2001, the 9th National Food and Nutrition

Plan(2002-2006), Document for the Conference on the National Food Commission Act 2008 and Food Management System of
Thailand, Bangkok, 19 March 2008, pp. 16-17.

26

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Box 6: Eating behaviors induced by changing lifestyles Urbanization and globalization changes the eating behaviors of Thai people. In urban areas, changes are faster because people have less time to cook, so they shift to ready-to-eat meals. A business survey by a consultant company found that Thai people were among leading Asian consumers of ready-to-eat meals. 43% and 44% frequently and occasionally ate out or bought ready-to-eat meal through food shops, restaurants and food stores 45 . Another survey also found that Thai people ate out about 13 meals a week. Bangkokians were champion, while people in the Northeastern had the highest rate of home-cook meals 46 . 40% of Thai people had less than 3 meals a day. People in rural area and in the agricultural sector were more likely to complete 3 meals a day. As income rose, meal consumption tended to be delayed to late at night 47 .

Another aspect of the changes is found in urban areas; hypermarkets or large discount stores have largely replaced small grocery stores and supermarkets in shopping malls. A consumer survey in Bangkok showed that between 1999 and 2001, consumers reduced their average visits to supermarkets from 4.1 trips to 2.2 trips per month but increased their visits to hypermarkets from 1.9 trips to 2.1 trips per month, citing convenience, proximity, familiarity and friendly environment as most important reasons for this shift. Wet markets continued to be the place where consumers buy fresh food. But the visits dropped from 17 trips per month to 12 trips per month. 48 Hypermarkets have become powerful in influencing consumers’ choices as they are able to select and control suppliers, and determine the environment where people buy their food. For instance, a study on fruits and vegetables revealed that supermarkets and hypermarkets through promotions, special events, shelving positions, and educational campaigns 49 . from food-exporting business, 20% of which were fruits and vegetables 50 Some hypermarkets have expanded into food export business. In 2007, 8,000 million baht of Tesco Lotus’s revenue was

45

Thai PR, 2008, “Thai Consumers: the World’s Biggest Fans of Ready-to-Eat Meals”, 9 February,

<http://www.thaipr.net/nc/readnews.aspx?newsid=44BFC698DC956E2B49798A09C59CE9DB, 15 November 2008>
46

“Doctors Revealed Thais Eating Out 13 Meals a Week Made Them Fat!”, Manager, 30 January 2008. Sawangdee, Yothin, et al., Summary of Economic Forecast Center’s National Survey, in National Health Foundation , 2006,

47

“Food and Water: Essential Factor for Thai People’s Sustainable Happiness”, Bangkok, pp. 337, 339.
48

“Hypermarkets in Thailand Gain Ground”, Bangkok Post, 29 May 2001. <http://www.foodnavigator.com/Financial-

Industry/Hypermarkets-in-Thailand-gain-ground, 18 October 2008>
49

Faculty of Economics, Kasetsart University et. al, 2008, Impacts of Thailand-China Free Trade Agreement (Under ASEAN-

China Framework) and Adjustment in Fruit and Vegetable Agribusiness System, Final Report No. 1, Report submitted to the
Office of Knowledge Management and Development, p. 78.
50

“Agriculture Export, a Complementary Role of Tesco Lotus”, Matichon, 21 February 2008.

27

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009

Box 7: Hypermarkets: New Comers in Thailand’s Food System Prior to the 1997 economic crisis, modern retail food was dominated by supermarkets located in department stores and convenient stores. The first few hypermarkets were established in late 1980s and early 1990s by Thai investors, in joint venture with foreign investors, namely Makro and Lotus by the CP Group, Big C and Carrefour by the Central Group. In 1996, hypermarkets started to take a lion’s share in the modern retail sector 51 . The 1997 crisis paved a way for foreign takeover of these businesses. Within 10 years, foreign-owned hypermarkets especially the 4 giants- Tesco Lotus, Big C, Carrefour and Makro- have expanded rapidly and drove traditional retailers out of business. In 2001 alone, according to the Ministry of Commerce, more than 900 local retail operators ceased operation because they could not compete with hypermarkets 52 . In 2002, a survey conducted by Thailand Development Research Institute (TDRI) concluded that within 1 kilometer of a hypermarket, there was a 15% net decrease of traditional retail outlets 53 . The four giant retailers expanded their outlets from 31 in 1996 to 196 in 2006 (Table 14). Total sale value of these retailers except Makro reached over 140,000 million baht in 2004 54 . But traditional wet markets continue to dominate the fresh food sector. As a result of head-on competition among different types of modern retailers, many supermarkets and hypermarkets have introduced small-scaled supermarkets
55

, e.g. Lotus Express of

Tesco Lotus, Big C Compact of Big C, City Market by Tops. In addition, 7-Eleven convenient stores have developed a specialization in ready-to-eat and frozen food products while expanding into other consumer products, e.g. magazines and books. A proliferation of small-scaled shops with long opening hours does not leave much room for traditional grocery stores; they have to join the franchises.

51

Ruangrai Tokrisna, n.d., “Thailand Changing Retail Food Sector: Consequences for Consumers, Producers, and Trade”, 2005-

2006 Individual Economy Profiles, Pacific Economic Cooperation Council, p. 4. <www.pecc.org/food/papers/20052006/Thailand/tncpec-ruangrai-paper.pdf, 30 December 2008>
52

Sukanya Jitpleecheep, 2004, “Enter the giants”, Mid-Year Economic Review, Bangkok Post.

<http://www.bangkokpost.com/midyear2004/retailing01.html, 2 November 2008>
53

Ruangrai Tokrisna, n.d., “Thailand Changing Retail Food Sector: Consequences for Consumers, Producers, and Trade”, 2005-

2006 Individual Economy Profiles, Pacific Economic Cooperation Council, p. 10. <www.pecc.org/food/papers/20052006/Thailand/tncpec-ruangrai-paper.pdf, 30 December 2008>.
54

Cited in Siriporn Yodkamonsart and Visate Suchinpram, 2008, “Empowering Small Retailers towards Equity in Income

Distribution”, Document for the Conference on Empowering People Sector for Equity in Income Distribution, pp. 13-14.
55

Sukanya Jitpleecheep, 2004, “Enter the giants”, Mid-Year Economic Review, Bangkok Post.

<http://www.bangkokpost.com/midyear2004/retailing01.html, 2 November 2008>

28

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009

Table 14: Numbers of major discount stores Discount Stores Tesco Big C Carrefour Macro Total 5 11 2 13 31 1996 1998 14 20 6 16 56 2000 24 23 11 19 77 2002 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. 2004 60 40 20 n.a. > 120 2006 91 53 23 29 196

Source: Cited in Siriporn Yodkamolsart and Wiset SuchinPrum, 2008, “Countervailing Power of Small Retailers to Promote Income Equality”, In Faculty of Economics, Chiang Mai University, The study on Countervailing Power to Promote Income Equality, Final report submitted to the National Economic and Social Advisory Council, p. 18. 4) Government’s measures to ensure food access In the past, Thailand’s poverty reduction strategy was primarily based on income-generation and provision of social welfare, particularly education. Food welfare projects were usually under other social welfare or health programs. These programs were designed for specific groups such as school lunch and milk programs for young children and cash transfer program for elderly people. Under normal situations, the government applied domestic price control on certain products to ensure fair trade and consumer’s access to basic and necessary commodities such as cooking gas, student’s uniforms and medicines, the list of which is determined annually by the Central Committee on Goods and Services under the supervision of the Ministry of Commerce 56 . When consumer price index rose, the so-called Blue Flag Discount Project would be launched to offer food and consumer products at 20-40% lower than market prices on a temporary basis 57 . Between October 2004 and September 2005, the project operated in 168 related discounted corners, 32 mobile units and 553 participating restaurants and supermarkets throughout the country 58 . It was estimated that the project would reduce the people’s cost of living by 50,000 million baht in 2008 59 .

56

Duenden Nikomborirak and Saowaluk Chevasittiyanon, 2008, “ Price Control Policy during Food Crisis”, Prachachart Turakij,

29 May.
57

“Business withdrew from Blue Flag Project”. Matichon, p. 19. Internal Trade Department, 2004, “Consumer Product Price Control Measures”.

58

<http://www.dit.go.th/uploads/6E6C7_1150.doc, 4 November 2008>
59

“ Blue Flag Help Saving 50 Billion Baht”, Post Today, 22 March 2008.

<http://www.posttoday.com/breakingnews.php?id=228186, 4 November 2008>

29

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
The oil and rice crises in early 2008 posed a challenge to the government as to how to deal with the problem of large-scaled food inaccessibility. Even though Thailand was the largest rice exporting country, its population was facing the prospect of hunger as soaring global prices of rice droved up domestic prices 60 . As inflation rose, consumers could afford to buy less amount of rice. Both price control and blue flag projects faced limitations in mitigating impacts on the poor. Minister of Finance proposed a coupon project for low-wage earners, old people and other marginalized groups by giving out money through top-up card, which could be used to buy necessary items in selected shops 61 . The ministry’s proposal received both praises and criticisms. Proponents of the coupon argued that the measure would subsidize low-wage earners, without distorting the market. Opponents foresaw complications in identifying and reaching target beneficiaries and were concerned about its political implications; it could be used as an effective vote garner for the government’s parties 62 . This proposal was eventually replaced by other economic assistance programs such as waiver of electricity bill and free public transportation. There was only one program related to food – the delay of the plan to hike the price of LPG commonly used for cooking. 2.4 Utilization Food utilization refers to the quantity and quality of food used for enhancing the people’s well-being. Thailand’s primary concern is related to food hazards due to chemical contamination or diseases. In recent years, misuse of food and overweight have become important issues. At present food utilization is a popular subject; it often draws lively and interesting public debates. 1) Food hazard

Food hazards can occur at any stage of food supply chain: from agricultural inputs, food production, processing, distribution, catering and storing, to domestic handling and preparation. Food hazards is caused by contamination of chemicals, heavy metals, germs and disease. Food inspections during the past decade revealed a disturbing trend. For example, in 1997, The Ministry of Public Health’s inspection of over 20,000 restaurants and food shops in municipal areas found that the outlets, utensils, and mishandling of food were causing contamination and food poisoning 63 . Another investigation in 2005 by the Health Department reported contamination in 44% of ready-toeat food from food stalls and supermarkets in 15 provinces. During 2007-2008, several findings by the Ministry of Public Health confirmed chronic contamination of Coliforms, E.Coli and TPC as a result
60

David Dawe, “Have Recent Price Increases in International Cereal Prices Been Transmitted to Domestic Economy: The

Experience in Seven Large Asian Countries”, ESA Working Paper No.08-03, Food and Agriculture Organization, pp.6-7.
61

“Finance Ministry Moves on the Poor’s Coupon Project”, Post Today, 13 July 2008. “Government Recalls Consumers’ Confidence- Exempted Oil Tax, Free Buses and Trains, Matichon, 15 July 2008. Nutrition Plan Formulation Subcommittee, the National Nutrition Committee, 1998, the 8th National Food and Nutrition

62

63

Plan(1997-2001), Document for the Conference on the National Food Commission Act 2008 and Food Management System of
Thailand, Bangkok, 19 March 2008.

30

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
of food handlers’ unhygienic conduct. 64 Due to a large number of mobile food hawkers and

vendors, food safety monitoring becomes more difficult. 65 The heavy use of chemicals in food production also contributes to this problem. For fruits and vegetables, pesticide use per area reaches the maximum limit 66 . From 1994 to 1999, the Ministry of Public Health’s surveillance discovered chemical contamination in regular and “chemical free” vegetables sold in the markets. In some cases, the contamination was well beyond the safety standard. Between 2000 and 2001, a random inspection by the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives also detected pesticide residues in 42% of the vegetables and beans. 11% including Chinese kale and asparagus bean contained residues in the amount that exceeded the Maximum Residue Limits (MRL) - the level of maximum chemical contamination acceptable in food. In recent years, although there was a drop in the import of chemical fertilizers, but import of herbicide has risen from 73,000 tons in 2003 to almost 102,000 tons in 2006 (see Table 15). Table 15: Volume and Value of Chemical Fertilizer and Herbicide in Thailand, 2003-2006 Import of chemical fertilizer Year 2003 2004 2005 2006 Source: Use of chemical fertilizer Import of herbicide Use of herbicide Average value Value (baht/ (million baht) rai) 0.55 76.07 0.76 78.63 0.60 80.20 0.77 98.76

Implementation Plan on Organic Agriculture Development (2008-2011).

Volume Value Volume Value Volume Value (millio (billion (kg/ (baht/ (thousa (billion n ton) baht) rai) rai) nd ton) baht) 4.72 26.40 36.0 200 73.03 10.04 3.88 33.24 29.0 252 99.84 10.37 3.59 35.95 27.2 272 78.65 10.57 3.68 35.38 27.9 268 101.79 13.02 National Committee of Organic Agriculture Development, 2008, Strategic Plan and

Box 8: Examples of food hazards in processed food in 2008 Case 1: Contaminated noodles In 2008, newspapers reported that rice noodles were contaminated with heavy metal. A research team that studied the noodle industry during 2006-2008 disclosed that used motor oil was used to make noodle soft, and less sticky so that it is easy to cut. Used motor oil is poisonous

64

Food and Drug Administration, Ministry of Public Health, 2008, “Comments to the Drafted Policy Proposals for the 1st Health

Assembly”, Letter submitted to the president of the National Health Assembly Organizing Commission. 21 October.
65

Ministry of Public Health, 2005, “Executive Summary”, Assessment Project of Food Safety Strategies in the First Phase

(2004), Nonthaburi.
66

Faculty of Economics, Chulalongkorn University, 2006, Organic Agriculture and Sustainable Trading Economy, Public Policy

Project for Food Safety and Sustainable Trading Economy, Bangkok, p. 58.

31

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
because it contains Alfatoxin, which induces high-blood pressure, heart disease and cancer. In addition, a variety of chemicals were used by factories to avoid inspection by the authority. 67 . Case 2: Contaminated imported milk power It is more complicated to ensure food security among imported products. Several inspections conducted during 1996-2003 by the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives found residue contamination in several import items including oranges, grapes, apples, lynches and lettuce 68 . In 2008, melamine contamination in Chinese-imported milk power became the talk of the town. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) ordered inspection of products on shelves with milk power ingredients and found contamination in many products including baby’s milk power, toffees and crackers. 2) Bird Flu outbreaks The

Domestic poultry consumption expanded at 3.1% per annum since 1970s, compared with the 3.4% global growth rate. By 1999, Thai people consumed more chicken than the global average. 69 . Frozen chicken becomes one of the largest export items. It is characterized by high consolidation and vertical integration, dominated by a few giant companies. Between 2003 and 2005, Thai consumers had to avoid poultry and egg at the reported bird flu outbreaks. The disease was first reported at a chicken farm in Nakhon Sawan province in the Central Region before spreading to other areas. In mid-January 2004, the epidemic extended to 32 provinces and seriously jeopardized both domestic and export markets. Over 63 million of poultry mostly chicken were slaughtered during 3 outbreaks in 2003-2005 (Table 16). The total number of chicken culled accounted for at least 25% of total poultry raised in the country. The Thai government was criticized for initially suppressing information about bird flu epidemic. To restore consumers’ confidence, the government started a campaign “Eating Thai Chicken is 100% Safe”, including a televised program showing prime minister and ministers eating cooked chicken. The industry distributed free chicken, organized chicken eating competition, etc. 70 By late 2004, a national bird flu committee was set up to develop a comprehensive plan to prevent and manage future risks. Thailand was not alone; the bird flu epidemic also affected several other countries. Regional and international collaboration was among important preventive and management strategies.
67

“Thailand Research Fund Warned of Several Chemical Contamination in “Noodles”, Thai Post, 29 August 2008. Department of Agriculture, “Research between 1996 and 2005”, pp 2-3. ,<http://it.doa.go.th/apsrdo/research10.doc, 1

68

November 2008>
69

McKinsey Global Institute, 2002, “Chicken Processing”, Thailand: Prosperity through Productivity, pp.137-138.

<http://www.mckinsey.com/mgi/reports/pdfs/thailand/08Chicken_processing.pdf , 15 December 2008>.
70

Chanida Chanyapate and Isabelle Delforge, 2004, Politics of Bird Flu in Thailand”, Focus on Trade, E-News Letter, No. 98,

April. < http://focusweb.org/number-98-april-2004.html?Itemid=106, 2 December 2008>

32

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Table 16: Bird flu outbreaks in Thailand, 2003-2005 Round of outbreak Period Reported epidemic areas First Death tolls of poultry due to diseases or slaughtered Infected people Sick Dead

The late 2003 190 in 42 60,000,000 12 8 to May 2004 provinces Second July 2004- April 1,542 in 51 3,000,000 5 4 2005 provinces Third July 200540 in 5 400,000 5 2 December 2005 provinces Source: Department of Livestock Development, Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperative; and Department of Disease Control, Ministry of Public Health, cited in Institute for Population and Social Research, 2006, “Facing the Challenge of Bird Flu”, Thai Health. An important measure is the introduction of industrial closed-door system (known as evaporative cooling system - EVAP) to protect animals from bird flu infection. This system was meant to replace the traditional open-aired system, e.g. raising poultry in the backyard commonly practiced by rural people. Most of 40,000 small and medium-sized poultry farms throughout the country were open-aired farms. The closed-farm policy was advocated by the government and some large chicken-raising companies. The government introduced a number of carrot and stick measures to advocate this transformation, for instance, requiring chicken raisers to register all chicken and to upgrade their farms; only those that adopt new chicken-raising would be entitled to compensation in times of epidemic. 71 Some raised doubt whether the closed farm system is an effective measure against bird flu as chicken in a closed farm system are not immune to the diseases 72 . 3) Food safety campaigns and linkage to agricultural policy

Compared with other dimensions of food security, food safety is the most popular topic that has been publicly discussed in details and at great length. This is due to the effort of those in the public health sector. In 1999, the FDA under the Ministry of Public Health launched the National Food Safety Program, with an aim to improve coordination among many government agencies through the newly set up National Food Safety Committee. The program and the committee were under a supervision of the National Food Commission set up in 1992. The committee was tasked to oversee food safety under normal circumstance and during emergencies. A taskforce and a working

71

Isabelle Delforge, 2004, “The Flu That Made Agribusiness Stronger”, <http://focusweb.org/content/view/363/28/, 9

December 2008>
72

See Isabelle Delforge, 2004, “The Flu That Made Agribusiness Stronger”, <http://focusweb.org/content/view/363/28/, 9

December 2008>

33

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
group were established. 73 The Ministry of Public Health’s food safety concerns were however limited to food processing, food distribution and food handling. It was not until the 2000s that the linkages between farm production and food safety were recognized at the policy level. Linkages between food and agriculture were fostered by new developments in both the health and agriculture sectors. In the public health sector, the movement for national health elimination, and health promotion. A mechanism for system reform has shifted from the previously narrow focus of illness treatment to a broader perspective of disease prevention, risk Participatory Healthy Public Policy (PHPP) called Health Assembly was established. 22 policy issues were addressed at the first health assembly in 2001 74 . The assembly was held annually in subsequent years. Realizing the linkages between health, food and agriculture, the Health Assembly launched the “Agriculture and Food for Health” workshop in 2003; it became the thematic focus of the assembly in the following year. Box 9: Policy Advocacy on Agriculture and Food for Health The theme of the 4th National Health Assembly “Agriculture and Food for Health: Threats from Chemicals” was a culmination of several local health assemblies. The slogan of the assembly was “Safe Agriculture, Safe Food, Good Life”. The assembly endorsed a number of policy proposals which were forwarded to and approved by the cabinet – a remarkable progress in participatory public policy. These proposals included 1) to promote agricultural system that is friendly to health and environment; 2) to develop integrated food safety strategies; 3) to establish control measures on advertisements and direct sales of agricultural chemicals; and 4) to support local and civil society organizations that are working toward a food safety system. Source: Charuk Chaiyaruk et al.(eds), Health Assembly: New Mechanism for Participatory Healthy Public Policy Development, Nonthaburi. The agricultural sector’s move toward food safety was driven by increasing competition in the global market especially consumers’ health concerns, which resulted in a number of rejections of Thai agricultural export products especially frozen shrimp and chicken. 75 In 2004, the government launched the Food Safety Year with an aim to improve the reputation of Thai products in the global market. In 2006, a strategic paper formulated by the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives
73

Food and Drug Administration, Ministry of Public Health, 1999, “National Food Safety Program”, Document for the

Conference on the National Food Commission Act 2008 and Food Management System of Thailand, Bangkok, 19 March 2008, pp. 25-28
74

National Health Commission Office of Thailand, 2008, Health Assembly: New Mechanism for Participatory ‘Healthy Public

Policy Development, pp. 7-10.
75

National Committee of Organic Agriculture Development, 2008, Strategic Plan and Implementation Plan on Organic

Agriculture Development (2008-2011), p. 6.

34

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
proposed three major transformations in agricultural production: from resource base to knowledge base, from low-valued commodities to higher-valued commodities, from quality monitoring at delivery stage to monitoring throughout the food chain (known as From Farm to Table policy) 76 . The paper outlined steps to prepare Thailand to become “the Kitchen of the World” 77 . To implement these policies, the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives initiated Good Agriculture Practice (GAP) and Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) certifications, which guaranteed good practices at farm and factory levels respectively in addition to the certified “Q Mark” on quality products. 4) Organic agriculture movements

Organic agriculture, due to low productivity, is largely outside the Thai policy makers’ radar screen. But organic agriculture has long been part of farmers’ agricultural practices before the country’s agricultural development paradigm shift. Realizing the negative impacts of agricultural chemicals on farmers’ health and the environment, a number of non-governmental organizations have taken the lead in supporting small-scaled farmers to convert to organic agriculture since 1980s 78 . In 1995, they developed a guideline for organic agriculture standards and established the Organic Agriculture Certification Thailand (ACT), which was accredited by the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM) in 2001 79 . Organic farming remained outside of the policy forum until late in 2001 when the newlyelected government announced a policy to promote organic farming and other types of non-chemical agriculture 80 . By 2005, organic agriculture became a national agenda; the government aimed to use organic agriculture to capture the emerging organic food markets and to advance the Kitchen of the World policy. The organic agriculture policy circle was therefore broadened to include many new actors including the Ministry of Science and Technology that implemented a project called “Strengthening the Export Capacity of Thailand’s Organic Agriculture” with financial support from international organizations. In 2007, the National Organic Agriculture Development Commission was set up by a cabinet resolution under the authority of the Office of National Economic and Social

76

National Committee of Organic Agriculture Development, 2008, Strategic Plan and Implementation Plan on Organic

Agriculture Development (2008-2011), p.10.
77

National Committee of Organic Agriculture Development, 2008, Strategic Plan and Implementation Plan on Organic

Agriculture Development (2008-2011), p. 17.
78

Green Net, and et. al, 2003, “Mainstreaming Organic Trade New Frontiers, Opportunities & Responsibilities”, Leaflet for the

7th IFOAM International Conference on Organic Trade.
79

Green Net, and et. al, 2003, “Mainstreaming Organic Trade New Frontiers, Opportunities & Responsibilities”, Leaflet for the

7th IFOAM International Conference on Organic Trade.
80

http://www.ldd.go.th/link_fertilizer/home.htm

35

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Development Board, to oversee the implementation of organic agriculture strategies. The first set of National Organic Agriculture Development Strategies was to be implemented during 2008-2011 81 . Box 10: Organic Farming Organic cultivation areas accounted for only a little over 6,000 rai in 1999. Rapid expansion of organic farm land happened a few years later when certified organic farms increased from about 13,000 rai in 2001 to 56,000 rai in 2002, 140,000 rai in 2006 (see Table 17). At present, organic production concentrates only in crops especially rice, vegetables and herbs with very limited expansion to livestock and other processing food. In the past, organic production was driven by demands from external markets but increasingly, Thai consumers with moderate and high income who are willing to pay 30-50% higher for organic products 82 , are driving up domestic demands. In 2006, sale of domestic organic products accounted for 16,665 tons with the total value of 520 million baht, an increase from 494 million baht in the previous year 83 . Nonetheless, domestic organic consumption is still constrained. Most Thai people are not aware of the benefits of organic food. Their purchasing power is also limited. Problems also persist on the production side. Table 17: Area of Certified Organic Agriculture by Crops, 1998- 2005 (unit: rai) Year 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 Rice 52,183 108,302 113,213 Field crops 6,281 5,510 7,005 9,901 32,841 46,719 7,860 6,731 6,547 Vegetables 13,284 14,845 15,141 Fruits 3,519 3,519 22,382 22,261 12,777 4,995 4,986 Others 769 769 769 761 1,077 Total 6,281 5,510 10,524 13,419 55,992 69,749 86,872 135,634 140,963

Source: Green Net and Earth Net, 2006, cited in 1 National Committee of Organic Agriculture Development, 2008, Strategic Plan and Implementation Plan on Organic Agriculture Development (2008-2011), p. 9.

81

National Committee of Organic Agriculture Development, 2008, Strategic Plan and Implementation Plan on Organic

Agriculture Development (2008-2011).

36

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Table 18: Volume and Value of Organic Products in Thailand by Type, 2003-2005 Types of organic agriculture products Rice Field crops Vegetables and herbs Fruits Others Total 2003 Volume (ton) 7,008 2,671 Value (million baht) 210.2 160.3 Volume (ton) 7,828 1,572 2,657 3,833 77 15,966 2004 Value (million baht) 313.1 55.0 159.4 76.7 4.6 608.8 Volume (ton) 18,960 2,041 4,618 3,747 49 29,415 2005 Value (million baht) 534.8 45.2 255.8 74.9 9.7 920.4

77 9,756

4.6 375.1

Source: Green Net and Earth Net, 2006, cited in National Committee of Organic Agriculture Development, 2008, Strategic Plan and Implementation Plan on Organic Agriculture Development (2008-2011), p. 10.

2.5

Stability

Food stability depends on several factors. Most important is the sustainability of natural resources; the sufficiency, accessibility and utilization dimensions of food security all depend on the quality and quantity of natural resources. Communities that are highly dependent on natural resources as source of food and production inputs are particularly vulnerable when these resources diminish or deteriorate. Both the 1997 and the 2007 constitutions empower local communities to take part in managing their natural resources. Several national and local movements are also pursuing this goal. Many have had frustrating experiences. 1) Deterioration of natural resources

Soil, water and marine resources are among the most important resources for food security. The past decade has seen continuous depletion of these resources in both quality and quantity due to excessive exploitation and mismanagement. Thailand has about 320 million rai of land. In 1998, it was estimated that 33% of the land had eroded surface and 60% had low organic matters. Moreover, 19% of total land especially in the forest area, high land and arable land were used for non-agricultural activities such as tourism, residential and commercial purposes. Due to salinity, acidity, sandiness, shallowness and slope complexity, 57% of total land was not suitable for cultivation 84. In 2006, 72% of farming communities experienced soil problems, mainly due to erosion

82

“Tops Saw Brightening Organic Market”, Post Today, 21 September 2008. National Committee of Organic Agriculture Development, 2008, Strategic Plan and Implementation Plan on Organic

83

Agriculture Development (2008-2011), p. 12.
84

Office of Natural Resources and Environmental Policy and Planning, 1998, “Executive Summary”, A Report on State of

Environment 1998, http://www.onep.go.th/download/soe41/03_execcutive%20summary_th.doc, 13 November 2008>

37

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
and lack of organic compounds 85 . The cultivation on such low quality of land resulted in low productivity. Data in 1999 revealed that soil erosion was responsible for the loss of mineral nutrients at an estimated value of 3,775 million baht, which resulted in 75% drop from normal yield 86 . Although water resources are generally adequate to meet the needs of several activities, some areas face water shortage in dry seasons. For example, in 2004/2005, there was a widespread water shortage in 57 provinces, which resulted in the loss of agricultural production on 12.5 million rai 87 . Water shortage is an important reason for conflicts between the industrial and agricultural sectors, which makes water management more difficult. In contrast, occasional heavy rainfalls result in flooding over agricultural areas. Between 2000 and 2001, heavy rainfall together with the blockade of water runoff by roads and highways in urban areas resulted in 14 floods 88 . Ground water was also contaminated by wastewater discharged from industrial sectors. Evidences of resource depletion are more striking in the case of marine resources. Despite Thailand’s outstanding export records, total catches from Thai water- the Gulf of Thailand and the Andaman Sea- were declining at an alarming rate. Marine catch per hour reduced from 298 kilograms in 1961 to only 3 kilograms in 1999 89 . Consequently, Thai fishing fleets had to go outside of Thai territorial water. In the 1990s, overseas catches rose sharply to compensate for the drop in domestic catches. In 1999, about 40% of the total marine catch originated from non-Thai water. Today, Thai fishing fleets operate as far as Somalia, Kenya, Nigeria, and Eritrea in Africa. They faced the risk of being attacked by sea pirates. During 2005-2008, there were at least 146 cases of fishing vessels and freighters including Thai-owned vessels being hijacked on Somalian and Nigerian waters. 90 . Most of these overseas catches are primarily for processing and export to other countries. They have little direct impact on domestic food consumption.

85

Office of Natural Resources and Environmental Policy and Planning , Situation on State of Environment Online.

<http://www.onep.go.th/soe%5Fonline/default2.asp?active_page_id=110 , 12 November 2008>
86

Office of Natural Resources and Environmental Policy and Planning, 1999, State of Environment 1999,

<http://www.onep.go.th/eng/soe/soe1999_2.asp, 12 November 2008>
87

Thai National Health Foundation, 2005, Food and Water: Survival and Sustainable Happiness, Bangkok, p. 84. Office of Natural Resources and Environmental Policy and Planning, 2001, “Executive Summary”, State of Environment 2001,

88

< http://www.onep.go.th/eng/soe/soe2001_1.asp, 12 November 2008>
89

Office of Natural Resources and Environmental Policy and Planning, 2001, “Executive Summary, State of Environment 2001,

< http://www.onep.go.th/eng/soe/soe2001_1.asp, 12 November 2008>
90

Pitsanu Chanwitan, 2008, “Thai Fishing Boats and Non-Thai Water Fishery”, National Defense College. <

http://thaindc.org/files/E02(1).pdf, 15 November 2008>

38

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Figure 5: Total Marine Catches, 1987-1999

Source: cited in Somying Piumsombun, 2003, “The Impact of International Fish Trade on Food Security in Thailand”, Report of the Expert Consultation on International Fish Trade and Food Security, Casablanca, Morocco, 27-30 January 2003, FAO Fisheries Report No. 708, ftp://ftp.fao.org/docrep/fao/006/y4961e/Y4961E00.pdf, 7 October 2008

2)

Changing characteristics of food producers

Small food producers constituted the majority of the food supply chain. Now, many of them, having experienced unstable farm income and rising cost of production, have left the agricultural sector. Farm income became a small part of the farming household’s revenue; the share dropped from 54% in 1976 to 35% in 2001 and 33% in 2004. 91 From 1999 onwards, the number of farm workers has continued to drop. Now they are outnumbered by non-farm workers’ 92 . A study of aging population in rural areas showed that in 1985, as many as 78% of young men (aged 15–39) in the rural areas worked in agriculture. By 2003, the figure fell to 59%. A more drastic drop was observed among young rural women, from 80% to 53%. This resulted in almost 20% reduction of farmers under 40 years of age. As a result, the agricultural sector now has the oldest workforce, compared with other sectors 93 . Shrinking and aging farming population is a

91

Graduate School of Kasertkart University, 2006, A Study on Poverty in Farming Households, A report submitted to the Office

of Agricultural Economics, Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives, p. 17.
92

National Economic and Social Advisory Council, “ A Survey Found Constant Reduction of Farm Workers”, 8 May 2008,

<http://www2.nesac.go.th/nesac/th/webboard/answer.php?GroupID=11&PageShow=1&TopView=&QID=588, 29 December 2008)
93

John Bryant and Rossarin Gray, 2005, “Rural population ageing and farm structure in Thailand”, Food and

Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, September, pp. 9-10. < http://www.globalaging.org/ruralaging/world/2005/fao.thailande.pdf, 30 December 2008>

39

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
cause of concern for food security. In 2008, the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives launched programs to develop a “new generation of farmers” through a five-year education and training program in vocational colleges 94 . Table 19: Demographic structure of agricultural workforce

Source, John Bryant and Rossarin Gray, 2005, “Rural Population Aging and Farm Structure in Thailand”, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations <http://www.globalaging.org/ruralaging/world/2005/fao.thailande.pdf, p. 9> Note: 1) *Males per 100 females.2) “Employed in agriculture” refers to people working at least one hour a week in agriculture.

The loss of young farmers is partly due to the lack of government’s policy to promote agricultural development. Several measures and mechanisms to enhance farmers’ income have proved to be costly and unsuccessful. One of the most important changes in the Thai agriculture is the penetration of business conglomerates into the food and agricultural sector. These business conglomerates have become very influential players in shaping the Thai agricultural sector. One of the changes is the production system based on contracts between farmers and business companies, known as contract farming. The success story of poultry contract-farming that propelled the poultry industry to become Thailand’s leading export led the Thai authorities and some development institutions such as the Asian Development Bank (ADB) 95 to regard contract farming as the way to address the problem of farmers’ poverty and income instability. 96 In the past decade, contract farming has gained acceptance at the policy level as a way for Thai agriculture to survive the intense global competition. A downside effect is unequal treatment between contract farming and non-

94

“Agriculture and Education Ministries Joined Hands to Promote New Farmer Generation”, Krungthep Turakij, 13 March 2008.

<http://www.bangkokbiznews.com/2008/03/13/news_25940785.php?news_id=25940785 >
95

Asian Development Bank, 2003, “Private Sector Critical To Thai Agriculture, Says ADB Expert”, News Brief, 27 March.

<http://www.adb.org/media/Articles/2003/1869_Thailand_Private_Sector_Critical_To_Thai_Agriculture_Says_ADB_Expert/, 28 December 2008>
96

Budsara Limnirunku et al., 2006, MCCC Contract Farming and Opportunities for Small Farmers’ Development”, 2006 Annual

Conference, Multiple Cropping Center, p. 99.< www.mcc.cmu.ac.th/research/MCCannualSeminar2006/link/pdf/13_MCC2006.pdf, 18 December 2008>

40

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
contract farming sectors. For example, the government’s program to address the adverse impact of

the FTA on the Northern farmers was primarily designed for the contract farming sector. As a matter of fact, contract farming and the increasing role of business conglomerates in agricultural development does not always produce positive outcomes. Several cases of unfair contracts and unfair practices provide testimony to the asymmetric power between the two sides. Some written contracts forced the farmers to accept risks beyond their shares of responsibility. For instance, some pig-raising contracts reserve rights for the company to include additional requirements, and to cancel the contract without advance notice to the farmer. 97 In addition, contract farming by large business companies does not guarantee good agricultural practice. Waste from intensive culture of fish raised in cages on contract farming polluted rivers. As far as contract farming is concerned, it is important that the government carefully balance its role as promoter on one hand, and regulator on the other 98 . Box 11: New Player in the Rice Sector The rise of staple food’s prices in early 2008 brought foreign investors to the Thai rice fields. The Thai agricultural sector has long been under protection for security reasons. Invited by a few business-minded politicians who held high-ranking positions, foreign investors from the oil-rich Middle East countries were interested in investing in rice production in Thailand and other countries in the region to ensure the security of rice import. Without any public consultation, the politicians proposed joint investment and export projects that involved land rental. The proposal met strong opposition from academics, civil society, and the business sector on ground that rice farming is central to the country’s economic, social and cultural security and should not be open to foreigners. Nonetheless, it was difficult to prevent foreign investment through nominees. Hence, the Rice Department, the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives, proposed to amend the legislation on land rental and protection of agricultural land by strictly prohibiting the use of nominees. Source: “Rice Department Ruled out Farm Rent”, Naewnar, 26 May 2008.

97

Chatupon Wangsuwattana and Chonlatee Wattanawetwichit, 2007, “Legal Guidelines for Protection of Farmers in Contract

Farming System”, Research Paper, Quality of work Life for Informal Worker Programme, pp. 11-12. < http://sadathai.org/Download/report.pdf, 29 December 2008>
98

Sukhpal Singh, 2005, “Role of the state in contract farming in Thailand: experience and lessons”, ASEAN Economic Bulletin,

Vol. 22, No.2, August.

41

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
3) Social Movements • Community Right Movements

Natural resources and food security are closely linked at the community level as rural people depend on natural resources such as river, forest, and land, as sources of food. One of the interesting developments since 1997 was the strengthening of community-based movements. Section 46 of the 1997 constitution recognized the right of local communities to conserve and rehabilitate their tradition, wisdoms, arts and cultures, and to participate in the management, usage and maintenance of natural resources. Section 79 stipulated the role of the state in protecting and promoting people’s participation in resource management. These two sections provided a policy space for local communities to keep up their pressure on the government for the decentralization of resource management, and for the introduction of a system of open access resources under which important natural resources such as forests and rivers are regarded as common resources 99 , which local communities can use and manage in a sustainable manner. Box 12: Food Resources Affected by Misguided Policy: Pak Moon Dam Government policies are instrumental for ensuring the stability of food resources. At times, misguided policies brought about opposite impacts. A classic case is the Pak Moon dam in Ubon Ratchathani province. During and after the dam construction, local people whose livelihoods depended on fishes from the Moon river had to endure floods over their rice fields and loss of fishing catches as the dam blocked off natural river flows. Several fish species disappeared. Some villagers had to migrate to work as waged labor in the cities. Others switched to other jobs to stay in their villages. In both cases, income and wage were insufficient to feed the families. “…Before [the dam’s construction] when rice cultivation was not enough for consumption, [I] went to catch fish and exchanged them for rice. Now, I can’t catch fish, so I don’t eat anything and go hungry. By myself, I can probably bear it but how about my wife and kids? Can I let them go hungry? Even if I have to beg for food, I have to do”. (Dum, dam-affected fisherman, p. 49) In 2001, after painstaking struggles, affected people along the Moon River, with support from NGOs and academics, successfully pressured the government to open all the dam sluice gates for 4 months in order to observe changes in the eco-system. A research conducted by affected

99

Buntoon Sertsirote et al., 2004, “Community Right and Resource Base in the Green Constitution: Hope and Way Out”,

Environment ‘04, Paper presented at the 8th Conference on Natural Resource and Environmental Conservation in Thailand, 5-6
June 2004, Bangkok, p. 275.

42

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
communities confirmed the recovery of fishing resources and the return of local people to their communities. The Ubon Ratchathani University proposed to the government that the dam’s sluice gates be open all year round. In 2002 the cabinet agreed to open them for 4 months each year. That seemed to be an acceptable compromise. But in 2007 under the military-led government, the sluice gates were abruptly closed. It was a disappointing set back for local communities’ strive for food security. Source: Tai Ban research team of the Assembly of the Poor’s Pak Mun Case, and South East Asia Rivers Network (Thailand), 2002, Economy, Society, Culture and Environment after the Dam’s Waterway Opening Investigation 2001-2002, Main Report) However, these principles have not been translated into practices. A noteworthy case is the community forest movement. In 2000, a Community Forest draft bill, with 50,000 signatures, was submitted to the Parliament as citizen’s bill as per the provision of the 1997 Constitution. Throughout Thailand, there were more than 8,000 community forests being used, protected and managed by local communities. The people’s draft bill aimed to legalize these community forests and recognize these local efforts 100 . After having encountered numerous obstacles in the parliamentary process, the proposed draft bill was endorsed in 2007 by the National Legislative Assembly (NLA) appointed by the military after the 2006. But the endorsed draft bill substantially deviated from its original draft in both the objective and content. Community rights advocates were disheartened by the fact that the endorsed draft bill reflected the policy makers’ distrust of local communities. • Sustainable Agriculture Movement

After years of advocacy work, sustainable agriculture was included in the 8th National Economic and Social Plan (1997-2001). The plan explicitly set concrete targets of expanding sustainable agriculture practices by at least 20% of total agricultural areas (about 25 million rai). The key implementation strategy was the participation of private and non-governmental sectors. An assessment at the end of the plan revealed several constrains in promoting sustainable agriculture, namely farmer’s lack of land ownership, financial support, and genuine belief in alternative agriculture, the government agencies’ overemphasis on quantitative outputs, and the stakeholders’ inconsistent collaboration 101 . Despite these obstacles, more financial support was allocated to support farmers’ initiatives at local levels. For example, during 2002-2004, a pilot project undertaken by the Alternative
100

Rajesh Daniel, 2002, “Thailand: Senate blocks draft community forest bill”, WRM's Bulletin, No. 57, April.

<http://www.wrm.org.uy/bulletin/57/Thailand.htm, 18 November 2008>
101

Office of National Economic and Social Development Board, 2004, An Assessment on Capacity and Living Quality

Development of Farmers in Sustainable Agriculture, Office of National Economic and Social Development Board Bangkok, p 15.

43

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Agriculture Network (a network of about 3,000 farming households throughout the country to empower small-scaled farmers), helped popularize sustainable agriculture and strengthen selfreliance capacity among local communities. Project assessment indicated that to a certain extent, farmer leaders began to embrace the sustainable agricultural approach, while beginners were not yet convinced as they faced difficulties during transition. Unfortunately interests from participating farmers dropped after the end of the project. 102 4) Anti-GMO Resistance

Genetically-modified organism (GMO) is related to food safety as much as food stability. In Thailand, consumers, farmers, business people, environmentalists, academics and some government agencies joined force to oppose the penetration of the GMO into the cultivation system. A survey on people’s perception during 2002-2004 revealed that the majority of farmers and consumers were aware of the GMOs through media coverage. Most consumers, academics and farmers felt that the country was not ready for GMO cultivation while many other groups were undecided due to lack of information. Almost all academics believed safety and impact prevention measures are needed to ensure the confidence of domestic consumers and export markets 103 . Thailand’s experiment with GMO started in 1982 when the National Center for Genetic Engineering and Agricultural Biotechnology (BIOTEC) was set up to conduct research on genetic engineering and biotechnology. The first GMO ringspot virus-resistance papaya was developed in collaboration with the Department of Agriculture and the Cornell University, USA. Since 1994, the government allowed field trials of imported GMOs such as FLAVAR SAVR tomatoes of the Upjohn; and Roundup corns and BT cottons of the Monsanto. The leakage of Monsanto’s BT cottons outside the experimental fields turned up the heat in the GMO debate. Opposition pointed out that the government failed to control bio-safety impacts on the environment and failed to prevent unexpected consequences which might occur in food and agricultural markets. The government eventually gave in to the pressure and passed a resolution on 3 April 2001 to halt a project for GMO’s import and cultivation for commercial purposes, except under laboratory and greenhouse conditions. Measures to assure both food safety and environmental safety are still weak. In 2003, the Ministry of Public Health issued an announcement to limit GMO use in corn and soy bean products to 5%. It also proposed the labeling of GMO products on a voluntary basis 104 . Although several committees and subcommittees have been set up since 1992, the agricultural authorities only issued
102

Sustainable Agriculture Foundation, n.d., “Pilot Project for Small Farmers’ Sustainable Agriculture Development”, <

http://www.sathai.org/aboutus/pilot.htm, 15 November 2008>.
103

Sutjai Jongwornkijwattana, 2005, “A Study on Genetically Modified Organism (GMO) and Thai Agriculture”, Office of

Agricultural Economics. <http://www.oae.go.th/model/GMOs.pdf, 14 November 2008>
104

Ruud Valyasevi, 2003, “Current Status of Biosafety of Genetic Modified Foods in Thailand”, pp. 51-53.

44

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
some guidelines to prevent potential impacts of this biotechnology. There was another GMO panic in 2004 when GMO papayas from the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives’ field trials in Khon Kaen province were found to have contaminated other crops in farms outside the experiment stations. This drew heavy criticisms of the inefficient monitoring mechanisms and renewed the demand for limiting GMO to laboratory experiments. In 2008, the cabinet reaffirmed the 2001 cabinet resolution, pending the enactment of the bio-safety law 105 . 3. CHALLENGES AND POLICY OPTIONS

Box 13: A Brief Chronology of Policies Related to Food Security Year 1972 1992 1999 • • • Policy The First National Food and Nutrition Plan was integrated into the 4th National Economic and Social Development Plan. National Food Commission headed by high-ranked official in the Ministry of Public Health was set up. National Food Commission approved an establishment of the National Food Safety System and the National Food Safety Committee. Two working groups were set up to operate under normal circumstances and crisis situation. 2001 • The National Food and Nutrition Plan 2002-2006 envisioned “Thailand to have food security and safety; Thai children to have good nutrition and growth with full capacity development; Thai people to have good health, talent and selfdependence, which will lead to sustainable development” 106 • The cabinet resolution on 3 April 2001 suspended a project to import and cultivate GMO for commercial purposes, except under laboratory and greenhouse conditions. 2002 2003 2004 • • • • Proposal of the National Strategic Plan on Food Security, jointly supported by the Department of Health and the WHO, was launched. The government concluded the first FTA with China to eliminate import and export tariffs of fruits and vegetables. The government launched the Food Safety Year. A set of human security indicators, including a component on food security, was launched by the Ministry of Social Development and Human Security. Food security indicators were dropped from the revised version in 2005 due to the lack of data. • The National Health Assembly adopted “Agriculture and Food for Health” as the thematic focus in 2004.

105

“Cabinet Prohibitted GMO’s Experiment in Fields”. Matichon, 26 December 2007.

45

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
2007 • The Ministry of Science and Technology proposed to establish the National Organic Agriculture Committee to oversee strategies related to organic agriculture to be implemented between 2008 and 2011. 2008 • The Cabinet adopted food and energy security as national agenda. Strategies to ensure food and energy security would be subsequently developed and implemented. • The First National Organic Agriculture Development Strategy (2008-2011) was adopted by the Cabinet to coordinate the works of several agencies to promote organic farming. • The Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives started its five-year plan to enhance the productivity of palm oil, sugarcane and cassava cultivation to demands for alternative energy. • The National Food Commission Act was enacted.

By and large, food security situation in Thailand is very different from most countries, given the abundance of food supply. Nevertheless, the country has faced several constraints and setbacks and recently revealed its own vulnerability as food prices reached unprecedented level. In the coming decades, situation of food security will be more uncertain as climate changes will be more severe and the resurgence of oil prices will affect many people in the food chain. A range of policies have been developed, or implemented. The situation and policy impacts needed to be monitored closely and adjusted to meet new challenges. Thailand’s experiences showed that most problems, including food security, could not be tackled effectively by any one agency. Collaboration and networking at all levels is important for mobilizing insights, knowledge, skills and other necessary resources to strengthen food security. The role of local administrative organizations, communities and non-governmental organizations is particularly vital in the localization and implementation of national policies. and constructively in policy making and implementation. In the next ten years, Thailand has a lot to do to address its vulnerability and prepare for new challenges. Below are selected policy options for the promotion of food security. The government should also empower and enhance the capacity of these stakeholders so that they can participate effectively

106

Nutrition Plan Formulation Subcommittee, National Nutrition Committee, 2001, the 9th National Food and Nutrition

Plan(2002-2006), Document for the Conference on the National Food Commission Act 2008 and Food Management System of
Thailand, Bangkok, 19 March 2008, p 2.

46

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
3.1 Availability 1) Balancing food security and energy security As long as demand for oil continues to rise and the most viable alternative energy is bio-fuel, conflict over the use of land and other resources between fuel and food will persist and expand. Many organizations have urged the government to ensure that the priority is given to food crop production over fuel crop production. The rise of staple food prices in the early 2008 led many people to believe that competition between food and fuel would disappear due to higher incentive in the rice market. As general commodity prices, as well as oil prices, started to drop a few months later, the interests to work out a policy and management mechanism to ensure a proper balance between food and fuel crops also subsided. In the wake of the rice crisis, there was a proposal to reduce cultivated land and to increase productivity by applying new types of seeds and production method for both food and fuel crops. But this proposal was not well-received as there was a concern that the introduction of new technology and seeds may not be cost-effective for many small-scaled farmers. It could also reduce the variety of seeds currently used and rehabilitated by local farmer movements. Another proposal to designate specific zones for food and fuel crops is gaining ground at the policy level. But critics fear that such approach would limit farmers’ options and eventually lead to monoculture. Another proposal calls for areas of protected land for food cultivation, and the decentralization of management and decisions to local administrations or communities. Such proposal is becoming popular among academics and local groups especially in areas where the encroachment of palm oil and other fuel crops has significantly changed the agricultural landscape. These and other policy options should be considered by stakeholders in order to assess the feasibility and possible impacts. In any case, the most important factor is the government’s political will and commitment to food security and alternative energy. 2) Minimizing impacts from climate change Climate change is expected to have far-reaching impacts on agriculture around the world. In Thailand, researches suggest that outputs of several crops will drop due to rising temperatures. Although changes in the environment affecting food and the agricultural system may be gradual, there is a need to prepare the people in the agriculture and food sectors for necessary adjustments. Weather forecast is an important piece of information for farmers. Many farmers increasingly found themselves under uncertain climate conditions, for example, longer period of dry season, delayed rainfall, heavy rain and new kinds of pest. Making decisions about cultivation is becoming more difficult and the probability of financial loss is high. A system to deliver timely and detailed

47

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
climate forecast should be set up to serve farming communities. Considering that generations of farmers have experienced and survived extreme climates, the adjustment system should be based on existing local wisdoms such as water management, development of seed varieties and crop management. The best way to engage the communities is to facilitate their learning process, so that they have the capacity to assess vulnerability and potential impacts, and make decisions that suit them. Adjustments in food and agricultural production can be complicated and may need institutional support. Currently, Thailand has a future market for certain agricultural commodities, e.g. rice, rubber. There are also proposals for climate insurance by financial institutions. But farmers need to understand how these financial mechanisms work before they can decide on appropriate adjustment options. Further, these financial innovations should also take into account different types of demand in different localities. Last but not least, collaboration and networking among the government, farmers, scientists, the private sector and NGOs is crucial for sustainable development. On the basis of partnership and mutual respect, stakeholders’ involvement can stimulate and speed up adjustments and the transformation process at national and local levels. 3) Research and Development in Appropriate Technology Technology has always been a major factor contributing to rising farm productivity, which will ensure sufficiency and availability of food. Despite Thailand’s abundant agriculture and food production, the productivity is low. The green revolution in 1960s that gave boost to increasing yields by way of new breeds and new seeds, chemical fertilizers and pesticides has reached its limitation, not to mention adverse impacts on health and environment. A new direction of research and developed is need to advance the food and agricultural sectors. New technology should focus on empowering users in applying and improving the technology by themselves. It should be inexpensive, flexible, easily managed and allow diffusion and development by stakeholders. Moreover, in the midst of climate change and energy crisis, any research and development should contribute to energy and resource saving. Current endeavors such as the GMOs and hybrid seeds hardly meet such criteria because they would render absolute rights to possess, distribute and make improvement to seed companies. As a matter of fact, Thailand is not short of appropriate technologies. A number of technological initiatives and practices, i.e. seed selection and soil improvement, proved to be more effective than mainstream methods. Unfortunately, there has not been adequate policy attention and resources to invest in the research and development in this area, partly due to policy makers’ blind trust in western technology, and partly due to business interests. It is important to disseminate existing appropriate technologies and attract young professionals and researchers to work in this

48

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
area. It may be necessary to set up an organization or research institute specializing in this kind of R&D. 3.2 Access 1) Developing information or database on food security Currently, a large part of Thailand’s information on food security are on food availability and nutrition. This constitutes a constraint on policy makers to make important decisions on other dimensions of food security. With regards to food access, the FIVIMs are probably the most comprehensive area-based data for identifying food vulnerability. But there are limitations in policy application. For example, they are no analysis of the sources of food supply, level of food selfsufficiency and dependency. Vulnerability at district level and coping strategies of the vulnerable groups are also not available. Furthermore, the assessment apparently accords high priority to monetary factors, and fails to take into account complicated situations in which poor people manage to gain access to food. These constraints may be attributed to inadequate discussions among stakeholders on the characteristics of food security or insecurity in the Thai settings. Unfortunately, the MSDHS’s current human security indicators missed out on food security element. Future projects to develop a better understanding and database on Thailand’s food situation should be based on active participation from stakeholders. 2) Promoting food access for the poor • The Rural Poor Many initiatives have been launched in response to concerns over impacts of failing agricultural prices and farmers’ indebtedness. For poor farming households, sustainable agriculture represents a viable alternative at individual and household level. Crop diversification minimizes the risk of price fluctuation and climate changes often experienced by monoculture. Improvement in soil fertility through natural approaches also means lower cost of production and less debt, compared with the mainstream farming approach. Unlike large agro-businesses, poor farmers are unable to invest heavily to compete in the increasingly competitive environment brought upon by trade liberalization. Sustainable agriculture is therefore an attractive option for small-scaled farm operations. Farmers will benefit from higher food security from both the production and consumption sides. It should be noted that a necessary condition for this policy option is land ownership by small-scaled farmers. Social relations and community empowerment are two other important factors in the promotion of food access. An interesting example is a village in Surin Province. With support

49

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
from NGOs, a group of organic agriculture farmers set up a Green Market in Surin municipal area. Their experiment became successful and was used as a case study by many other groups. After a few years, they expanded to include farmers with little access to land and were able to lift many of these farmers out of poverty. The group provided resources in terms of loan, advices, agricultural techniques and moral supports to help farmers to make a smooth transition to organic farming and participate in the Green Market 107 . Such example can be replicated in other areas, with support from the government and local administrations. Regardless of their status as food producer or consumer, poor people in rural areas are highly dependent on natural resources and community support for food and nutrition. Therefore, deterioration of natural resources or social relations in the community inevitably leads to vulnerability, particularly among households with aging people and children. As demonstrated by the case of Pak Moon Dam, natural resources play a very important role in providing food security. When the access to natural resources is disrupted, villagers find it difficult to adjust their livelihood, and often fail at finding other ways and means to feed their families. It is quite common for development projects to overlook the role of resources such as forest as natural food safety net for nearby communities. Therefore, policies to enhance food access must be based on the community’s resource perspective, and contribute to the enhancement of existing food resources. In other words, the promotion of food security should go hand-in-hand with the promotion of sustainable livelihood and sustainable resources. • The Urban Poor Food access among the urban poor is more straightforward. The urban poor are not food producers and rely on their daily wages to buy food for the family. They will therefore be hardest hit when food prices rise. The government’s general response to rising food prices is price control and the provision of subsidized food on a temporary basis. But this measure does not directly target the poor. Hence, they may not be able to benefit from the scheme. Monetary constraint may be another barrier. The urban poor may be able to buy a small portion of rice from nearby grocery shops, but cannot afford a large bag of government-subsidized rice sold in participating shops and supermarkets. Although commodity prices have dropped, effective measures to respond to future price shocks should be carefully planned to ensure food access for the target population. In addition, considering that the urban poor are primarily concerned about employment and housing security, any attempt to improve their employment and housing security would make them more capable and ready to deal with food insecurity.

107

For more information, see Sukran Rojanapraiwong, 2008, Self-Reliance Action, Rewriting from Research Study on

Alternative Livelihoods at Thap Thai, Surin Province.

50

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Short-term and ad-hoc measure such as food coupons should involve participation from the urban poor communities; they can help design a more appropriate instrument and delivery approach. Long-term measures should attempt to link rural poor producers and urban poor consumers, possibly through a food fund to provide credits and supply chain management. A pilot project should be undertaken to assess the feasibility and to help outline important details of the scheme. Moreover, home-grown vegetables should be encouraged as a part of recreation and community welfare. It is also worth exploring existing initiatives at local level such as lunch funds for children to identify gaps and to provide necessary support. 3.3 Utilization 1) Promoting organic food and agriculture Chemical-intensive agriculture induces adverse health impacts on both food producers and consumers. Despite steady expansion, organic agriculture coverage is still miniscule compared with mainstream agriculture. Main obstacles include lack of food safety awareness among consumers, lack of serious commitment by the government, and lower prices of food produced under the chemical system. Although organic food has gained more ground in the past ten years, most of organic production is sold to and consumed by well-off consumers in developed countries. The government largely sees organic agriculture as another niche product rather than a viable option to enhance food safety for domestic consumers. The Ministry of Agriculture’s strategic plan on national organic agriculture in 2008 represents an opportunity for less business-oriented objectives, such as strengthening food security and promoting food safety among farmers and consumers. Interestingly, the plan’s definition of organic agriculture goes beyond the standard definition, to include other local organic approaches that have better potentials to serve local needs. Other important strategies are to support farmers groups during the transition to organic agriculture, to expand the production of organic matters for fertilizers, and to strengthen networks of organic-related organizations. Lessons learned from the promotion of sustainable agriculture during the 8th national development plan suggests that overemphasis on quantitative results and insensitivity to structural factors that influence the farmers’ choices, e.g. land ownership, could lead to unsustainable result. Farmers may shift back to chemical-intensive farming when financial support is no longer available. These lessons learned should be taken into account when designing and implementing the plan for organic agriculture. Participation is the key principle. A number of NGOs, farmers and organic food companies have been consistently active in promoting the expansion of organic agriculture. Support should be given to provincial and local administrations that show strong commitment and capacity to

51

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
roll out a plan for organic food and agriculture. Policy advocacy should focus on promoting seasonal, local and fresh vegetables and food in local markets to reduce risks from chemical contamination. 2) Dealing with imported food hazards As a result of trade liberalization, food export and import increased, adding complication and difficulty to food safety. The authorities concerned do not have adequate capacity and resources for effective inspection. Thais are therefore exposed to higher risks from outside. On the contrary, Thai food products face non-tariff barriers in the form of strict sanitary and safety measures imposed by trading counterparts. In response to these challenges, more resources should be put into food inspection and mechanisms to protect domestic consumers from cheap but unsafe imported food. This requires strong leadership and a good teamwork. Consumer education is another important measure. Consumers should learn to make distinction between food appearance and food safety. They should also learn about food chain. Without proper education, any measure to prevent food hazards is likely to fail. It is important that schools, universities, markets, temples, hospitals join in this effort. 3.4 Sustainability 1) Recognizing the role of communities in resource management Community rights movement emerged in response to the perceived failure and limitation of the centralized resource management system. In addition to resource depletion and degradation, such system also breeds conflicts between different sectors and population groups. The system failed to recognize and make use of local wisdoms about the significance of each natural resources. For example, wetland in the Northeastern region is considered by the locals to be vital for the local ecological and food system. But wetlands have been consistently encroached by the government or private agro-business or industrial projects. They are also used as garbage dumping ground. Natural resource management is now the responsibility of local administrations, with participation from local communities. Not very community has the capacity to manage the resources effectively. It is therefore important to enhance the capacity of both the local administrations and the communities in natural resource management. This requires a certain degree of trust and collaboration between the authorities and the communities. 2) Developing sustainable food supply chain After years of high growth, Thailand has reached its resource limits. In recent years, climate changes demonstrated the downside of unlimited growth and delivered devastative blows on people’s livelihood and food security. As a food producing country, Thailand has to address the problem of

52

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
overexploitation of all kinds of natural resources and adopt a more sustainable approach to food production and consumption. First of all, existing laws and regulations aiming to protect the sustainability of resources must be strictly enforced. This can be achieved by engaging stakeholders in consultation and decision-making and thereby making the policy process more participatory and transparent. The consultation, dialogue, and decision-making should be informed by research and impact assessment studies. One of the measures that the government should consider is taxation. Environment tax or sustainability tax is useful for incorporating external cost of resource use and resource consumption by producers and consumers. Tax revenue should be allocated to activities or programs that benefit sustainability, for instance tax on import or sale of agricultural chemicals should be used to subsidize debt moratorium for farmers who desire to shift to sustainable agriculture, fund public food education programs, or roll out sustainability food labeling. A number of studies show that chemical used in agriculture releases green house gas into the atmosphere which contributes to global warming. Thailand should join the international community’s fight against climate change by making a transition toward sustainable food and agriculture system. Food security is also linked to biodiversity as biodiversity is fundamental for the quality and variety of food supply. This calls for another examination of the GMO debate. At present, a number of countries have made advanced progress on GMO research and development. It is important for Thailand to assess the pros and cons of GMO from many perspectives. As an important agricultural exporting country with a large number of population in the agricultural sector, the expansion of GMOs cultivation is likely to constitute a threat as it involves a high degree of monopoly. GMOs products are likely to encounter resistance from many countries especially in the Europe – Thailand’s main export market. Better control and monitoring of impacts by relevant government agencies, better regulations and process should be put in place before Thailand opts to promote GMOs on a commercial basis. In addition, Thailand still has a large variety of native seeds, which farmers can make improvement to suit changing climates and increase productivity. But this calls for serious support from the government. Otherwise, these valuable assets would be lost, and Thai farmers and consumers would have fewer food and production choices. Last but not least, the sustainability and stability of food supply chain requires government intervention to create a level playing field to allow for effective and meaningful participation by small players. While some economists foresee the unavoidable decline of small-sized farmers and the dominance of agro-business, others believe that failure to formulate appropriate interventions would accelerate this scenario, which would result in the concentration of control over Thai agriculture among a handful of agro-business companies, which should constitute a concern, from the food security perspective.

53

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009

Aside from food production, small-scaled farming should be recognized for their social, cultural and ecological roles. This is seldom accounted for in the policy makers’ and consumers’ balance sheet. These roles include keepers of local knowledge and seed varieties, to name just a few. There is room for policy intervention. But action is urgently needed, considering the age factor of the current generation of farmers. By and large, the intervention should aim to redress the imbalance in the food and agriculture system, improve welfare and social status of people in the farming sector through education, health, and other assistance programs. But first and foremost is to restructure the agricultural policy process to be more inclusive and decentralized, to avoid ineffective, mismanaged and unsustainable policies and implementation.

54

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
References “Agriculture and Education Ministries Joined Hands to Promote New Farmer Generation”. Krungthep

Turakij. 13 March 2008.
“Agriculture Export. a Complementary Role of Tesco Lotus”. Matichon. 21 February 2008. “Blue Flag Help Saving 50 Billion Baht”. Post Today. 22 March 2008. “Business withdrew from Blue Flag Project”. Matichon. p. 19. “Cabinet Prohibitted GMO’s Experiment in Fields”. Matichon. 26 December 2007. “Doctors Revealed Thais Eating Out 13 Meals a Week Made Them Fat!”. Manager. 30 January 2008. “Finance Ministry Moves on the Poor’s Coupon Project”. Post Today. 13 July 2008. “Government Pours 25 Billion Baht Loan for Fuel Crop Plantation”. Naew Nar. 19 May 2008. “Government Recalls Consumers’ Confidence- Exempted Oil Tax. Free Buses and Trains. Matichon. 15 July 2008. “Hypermarkets in Thailand Gain Ground”. Bangkok Post. 29 May 2001. “In the Frame”. Siam Turakij. 1 June 2005. <http://news.utcc.ac.th/content/view/349/13/, accessed on 18 December 2008> “Northeastern Farmers Growing Tapioca in Rice Fields Were Not Convinced in Yields”. Prachatham. 26 May 2008. <http://www.newspnn.com/V2008/detail.php?code=n1_26052008_01, accessed on 17 October 2008> “Thai Oil Palm Pilot Crop Ready For Harvest; May Replace Tangerine Crops Wiped Out By Viruses”.

Biofuels Digest. 19 May 2008. <http://www.biofuelsdigest.com/blog2/2008/05/19/thai-oilpalm-pilot-crop-ready-for-harvest-may-replace-tangerine-crops-wiped-out-by-viruses/, accessed on 15 November 2008> “Thailand Research Fund Warned of Several Chemical Contamination in “Noodles”. Thai Post. 29 August 2008. “Tops Saw Brightening Organic Market”. Post Today. 21 September 2008. “Understanding the Global Rice Crisis”. Business Week. Economics and Policy. April 28. 2008. The Agricultural Futures Trading Commission, 2007, “Structure of Domestic Rice Market” <http://www.aftc.or.th/itc/products_analyze_price_16.php?id=58&fgrp_id=5&fmnu_id=18, 4 February 2009> Asian Development Bank. 2003. “Private Sector Critical To Thai Agriculture, Says ADB Expert”. News

Brief. 27 March.
<http://www.adb.org/media/Articles/2003/1869_Thailand_Private_Sector_Critical_To_Thai_A griculture_Says_ADB_Expert/, accessed on 28 December 2008> Boonyabancha, Somsook. 2005. “Scaling Up Slums And Squatter Settlements Upgrading In Thailand Leading To Community-Driven Integrated Social Development At City-Wide Level”. Paper Presented at the Arusha Conference on New Frontiers of Social Policy. 12-15 December 2005.

55

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
<http://siteresources.worldbank.org/INTRANETSOCIALDEVELOPMENT/Resources/Boonyaban chapaper.rev.1.pdf, accessed on 8 December 2008> Bryant, John and Gray, Rossarin. 2005. “Rural population ageing and farm structure in Thailand”. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. September. < http://www.globalaging.org/ruralaging/world/2005/fao.thailande.pdf, accessed on 30 December 2008> Chanwitan, Pitsanu. 2008. “Thai Fishing Boats and Non-Thai Water Fishery”. National Defense College. < http://thaindc.org/files/E02(1).pdf, accessed on 15 November 2008> Chanyapate, Chanida and Delforge, Isabelle. 2004. Politics of Bird Flu in Thailand”. Focus on Trade. E-News Letter. No. 98. April. < http://focusweb.org/number-98-april-2004.html?Itemid=106, accessed on 2 December 2008> Chayapute, Pitaksit. et al. 1999. “A Study on Economic and Social Conditions of Ultra Poor Households and Households with Unemployed Members as a Result of Economic Crisis in the Northeastern Region”. ”In Narong Petprasert (ed.). Thai Poor People in the Crisis. Daniel, Rajesh. 2002. “Thailand: Senate blocks draft community forest bill”. WRM's Bulletin. No. 57. April. <http://www.wrm.org.uy/bulletin/57/Thailand.htm, accessed on 18 November 2008> Dawe, David. “Have Recent Price Increases in International Cereal Prices Been Transmitted to Domestic Economy: The Experience in Seven Large Asian Countries”. ESA Working Paper No.08-03. Food and Agriculture Organization. Delforge, Isabelle. 2004. “The Flu That Made Agribusiness Stronger”. <http://focusweb.org/content/view/363/28/, accessed on 9 December 2008> Department of Agriculture. “Research between 1996 and 2005”. .<http://it.doa.go.th/apsrdo/research10.doc, accessed on 1 November 2008> Drafting Committee of the Strategic Plan. 2002. “Executive summary”. Strategic Plan Proposal on

Food Security. A report as part of the Establishment of Food Safety Master Plan for Domestic
Consumer in Thailand under the Public Health Act. 1992. Supported by the Health Department and the World Health Organization. Bangkok. Faculty of Economics. Chulalongkorn University. 2006. Organic Agriculture and Sustainable Trading

Economy. Public Policy Project for Food Safety and Sustainable Trading Economy. Bangkok.
Faculty of Economics. Kasetsart University et al. 2008. Impacts of Thailand-China Free Trade

Agreement (Under ASEAN-China Framework) and Adjustment in Fruit and Vegetable Agribusiness System. Final Report No. 1. Report submitted to the Office of Knowledge
Management and Development. Food and Agriculture Organization. 2000. “Glossary”. Food Insecurity and Vulnerability Information

and Mapping Systems. <http://www.fivims.org/index.php?option=com_glossary&Itemid=31,
accessed on 12 October 2008> Food and Agriculture Organization. 2000. The State of Food Insecurity in the World 2000.

56

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Food and Agriculture Organization. 2006. “Food Security”. Policy Brief. June. Issue 2. p.3. <ftp://ftp.fao.org/es/ESA/policybriefs/pb_02.pdf, accessed on 10 October 2008> Food and Agriculture Organization. n.d. “Food Security and Livelihoods”. Thematic Brief. FAO Livelihood Support Programme. Food and Drug Administration. Ministry of Public Health. 1999. “National Food Safety Program”. Document for the Conference on the National Food Commission Act 2008 and Food Management System of Thailand. Bangkok. 19 March 2008. pp. 25-28 Food and Drug Administration. Ministry of Public Health. 2008. “Comments to the Drafted Policy Proposals for the 1st Health Assembly”. Letter submitted to the president of the National Health Assembly Organizing Commission. 21 October. General Statistical Office. 1998. cited In Minas K. Papademetriou. et al. (Eds). 1999. Bridging The

Rice Yield Gap In The Asia-Pacific Region.
<http://www.fao.org/docrep/003/x6905e/x6905e0e.htm, accessed on 10 December 2008> Graduate School of Kasertkart University. 2006. A Study on Poverty in Farming Households. A report submitted to the Office of Agricultural Economics. Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives. Green Net et. al. 2003. “Mainstreaming Organic Trade New Frontiers. Opportunities & Responsibilities”. Leaflet for the 7th IFOAM International Conference on Organic Trade. Imdee, Piyanart. 2004. Food security of rural community : a case study of Pa-Kha Village. Suak Sub-

District. Muangnan District. Nan Province . Thesis for the Master Degree at Thammasart
University. Internal Trade Department. 2004. “Consumer Product Price Control Measures”. <http://www.dit.go.th/uploads/6E6C7_1150.doc, accessed on 4 November 2008> International Rice Research Institute, 2009, IRRI World Rice Statistics. <http://beta.irri.org/statistics/images/stories/wrs/wrs_nov08_table03_yield.xls, 4 February 2009> Jitpleecheep, Sukanya. 2004. “Enter the giants”. Mid-Year Economic Review. Bangkok Post. <http://www.bangkokpost.com/midyear2004/retailing01.html, accessed on 2 November 2008> Jongwornkijwattana, Sutjai. 2005. “A Study on Genetically Modified Organism (GMO) and Thai Agriculture”. Office of Agricultural Economics. <http://www.oae.go.th/model/GMOs.pdf, accessed on 14 November 2008> Kaiyoorawong, Sayamol. “From Commercial Forest Plantation Policy to Fuel Crop Policy: Food Security in the Southern Region”. Paper Presented at the Public Conference on Fuel Crop and Rubber Policies: Opportunities and Risks of Farmers. 17-19 October 2008. <http://www.sathai.org/images/Story_thai/022-pic/Annex1.pdf, accessed on 18 December 2008> Limnirunku, Budsara et al. 2006. MCCC Contract Farming and Opportunities for Small Farmers’ Development”. 2006 Annual Conference. Multiple Cropping Center. <

57

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
www.mcc.cmu.ac.th/research/MCCannualSeminar2006/link/pdf/13_MCC2006.pdf, accessed on 18 December 2008> McKinsey Global Institute. 2002. “Chicken Processing”. Thailand: Prosperity through Productivity. <http://www.mckinsey.com/mgi/reports/pdfs/thailand/08Chicken_processing.pdf, accessed on 15 December 2008>. Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives. n.d. “FIVIMS in Thailand” <http://www.fivims.org/index2.php?option=com_content&do_pdf=1&id=45, accessed on 14 October 2008> Ministry of Development and Human Security. 2006. “Thailand and Human Security: Positions and the Next Step”. Report of the National Conference. 8-9 May. Ministry of Public Health. 1999. Proposals: National Food Safety Program. Nonthaburi. Ministry of Public Health. 2003. A Survey on Food and Nutrition of Thailand. the 5th Assessment. Ministry of Public Health. 2005. “Executive Summary”. Assessment Project of Food Safety Strategies

in the First Phase (2004). Nonthaburi.
National Committee of Organic Agriculture Development. 2008. Strategic Plan and Implementation Plan on Organic Agriculture Development (2008-2011). National Economic and Social Advisory Council. “ A Survey Found Constant Reduction of Farm Workers”. 8 May 2008. <http://www2.nesac.go.th/nesac/th/webboard/answer.php?GroupID=11&PageShow=1&Top View=&QID=588, accessed on 29 December 2008) National Health Commission Office of Thailand. 2008. Health Assembly: New Mechanism for

Participatory ‘Healthy Public Policy Development.
National Statistical Office of Thailand. 2006. ”Summary of the Population and Social Survey on LowIncome Urban Communities 2006”. <http://service.nso.go.th/nso/nsopublish/service/survey/income_49.pdf, accessed on 16 December 2008> National Statistical Office of Thailand. 2007. “Summary of the Survey on Informal Workers 2007”. <http://service.nso.go.th/nso/nsopublish/service/survey/labour_ext50.pdf , accessed on 16 December 2008> Nikomborirak, Duenden and Chevasittiyanon, Saowaluk. 2008. “Price Control Policy during Food Crisis”. Prachachart Turakij. 29 May. Nutrition Plan Formulation Subcommittee, National Nutrition Committee. 2001. The 9th National Food

and Nutrition Plan(2002-2006). Document for the Conference on the National Food
Commission Act 2008 and Food Management System of Thailand. Bangkok. 19 March 2008. Office of National Economic and Social Development Board. 2002. “The Poor: New Opportunities for Self-Reliance”.

58

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Office of National Economic and Social Development Board. 2004. An Assessment on Capacity and

Living Quality Development of Farmers in Sustainable Agriculture. Office of National
Economic and Social Development Board Bangkok. Office of National Economic and Social Development Board. 2007. Poverty Assessment Report. Office of Natural Resources and Environmental Policy and Planning. 1998. “Executive Summary”. A

Report on State of Environment 1998.
http://www.onep.go.th/download/soe41/03_execcutive%20summary_th.doc, accessed on 13 November 2008> Office of Natural Resources and Environmental Policy and Planning. n.d. Situation on State of

Environment Online.
<http://www.onep.go.th/soe%5Fonline/default2.asp?active_page_id=110, accessed on 12 November 2008> Office of Natural Resources and Environmental Policy and Planning. 2001. “Executive Summary”.

State of Environment 2001. <http://www.onep.go.th/eng/soe/soe2001_1.asp, accessed on
12 November 2008> Office of Natural Resources and Environmental Policy and Planning. 1999. State of Environment 1999. <http://www.onep.go.th/eng/soe/soe1999_2.asp, accessed on 12 November 2008> Office of the National Economic and Social Development Board. 2007. Poverty Assessment Report. Piaseu, Noppawan and Mitchell, Pamela. 2004. “Household Food Insecurity among Urban Poor in Thailand”. Journal of Nursing Scholarship. Volume 36. Issue 2. Pintobtang, Prapart. 2007. “Proposals on Social Welfare Development for Farming Communities”. Research project on Social Safety Net: Fundamental to Equity. Final report submitted to the National Economic and Social Advisory Council Part 2. p. 14 Piumsombun, Somying. 2003. “The Impact of International Fish Trade on Food Security in Thailand”. Report of the Expert Consultation on International Fish Trade and Food Security. FAO Fisheries Report. No. 708. Rome. <http://www.fao.org/DOCREP/006/Y4961E/y4961e0j.htm, accessed on 20 October 2008> Rojanapraiwong, Sukran. 2008. Self-Reliance Action. Rewriten from Research Study on Alternative Livelihoods at Thap Thai. Surin Province. Sawangdee, Yothin et al. Summary of Economic Forecast Center’s National Survey. in National Health Foundation . 2006. “Food and Water: Essential Factor for Thai People’s Sustainable Happiness”. Bangkok. Sertsirote, Buntoon et al. 2004. “Community Right and Resource Base in the Green Constitution: Hope and Way Out”. Environment ‘04. Paper presented at the 8th Conference on Natural Resource and Environmental Conservation in Thailand. 5-6 June 2004. Bangkok. Siamwalla, Ammar. 1996. “Thai Agriculture: From Engine of Growth to Sunset Status”. TDRI Quaterly

Review. Volume 11. No.4.

59

Report submitted to UNDP Thailand/January 2009
Singh, Sukhpal. 2005. “Role of the state in contract farming in Thailand: experience and lessons”.

ASEAN Economic Bulletin. Vol. 22. No.2. August.
Sustainable Agriculture Foundation. n.d. “Pilot Project for Small Farmers’ Sustainable Agriculture Development”. < http://www.sathai.org/aboutus/pilot.htm, accessed on 15 November 2008>. Thai National Health Foundation. 2005. Food and Water: Survival and Sustainable Happiness. Bangkok. Thai PR. 2008. “Thai Consumers: the World’s Biggest Fans of Ready-to-Eat Meals”. 9 February. <http://www.thaipr.net/nc/readnews.aspx?newsid=44BFC698DC956E2B49798A09C59CE9DB , accessed on 15 November 2008> Tokrisna, Ruangrai. n.d. “Thailand Changing Retail Food Sector: Consequences for Consumers. Producers. and Trade”. 2005-2006 Individual Economy Profiles. Pacific Economic Cooperation Council. <www.pecc.org/food/papers/2005-2006/Thailand/tncpec-ruangrai-paper.pdf, accessed on 30 December 2008> Valyasevi, Ruud. 2003. “Current Status of Biosafety of Genetic Modified Foods in Thailand”. Wangsuwattana, Chatupon and Wattanawetwichit, Chonlatee. 2007. “Legal Guidelines for Protection of Farmers in Contract Farming System”. Research Paper. Quality of work Life for Informal Worker Programme. < http://sadathai.org/Download/report.pdf, accessed on 29 December 2008> Yamorisut, Uruwan and et. al. 2006. “Factors Associated with Dual Form of Malnutrition in School Children in Nakhon Pathom and Bangkok”. Journal of the Medical Association of Thailand. 89 (7). July. Yodkamonsart, Siriporn and Suchinpram, Visate. 2008. “Empowering Small Retailers towards Equity in Income Distribution”. Document for the Conference on Empowering People Sector for Equity in Income Distribution. The National Economic and Social Advisory Council.

60

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful