Thailand’s Ministry of Commerce has announced plans to boost Thailand’s organic production and exports through increased promotions and funding to the industry.
Malee Choklumlerd, inspector-general of Thailand’s Ministry of Commerce, told the Nation that the Thai government is planning to promote three new organic products each year in order to boost Thailand’s organic exports.
“People now want healthier lives, and a better environment,” Choklumlerd said. “Thai producers should shift to producing organic products to serve rising demand in the market. Organic growing will help increase farmers’ health and returns, as those concerned about organic products have more purchasing power.”
Thailand’s organic produce accounts for 1 per cent of Thai’s total food market, but with promotions planned over the next few years, the ministry is aiming for a 10 per cent increase year on year of organic exports including fruit, vegetables and rice, placing Thailand as the Asean hub for organic production and trade by 2020.
On top of increased promotions, including domestic education campaigns, Choklumlerd said the ministry is will push for support at a policy level as well as developing an organic fund to allow financial support for organic farmers.
The Ministry of Commerce signed an agreement with eight of Thailand’s organic associations and foundations in July in order to begin developing Thailand’s organics industry, both domestically and internationally.
Global organic products had a market value of $63.8m in 2012, according to the 2014 World of Organic Agriculture report, with North America, the EU, Australia and Japan some of the biggest markets for organic produce.