Thailand’s ministry of commerce has moved to promote domestic sales of fruit and vegetables, in an effort to help producers following a downturn in exports due to the coronavirus pandemic.
According to a report in Pattaya Mail, the ministry has dispatched a caravan of Blue Flag grocery trucks from Talaad Thai, a wholesale market for groceries.
The trucks will deliver items to villages and to villagers’ homes, as well as communities in Bangkok and in neighbouring provinces.
The 350 grocery trucks will sell fresh fruit and vegetables, as well as a range of essential items including eggs, hand sanitiser and noodles.
Thailand’s deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Commerce, Jurin Laksanawisit, said the ministry is working with the Thai agricultural wholesale market association, the Thai fresh market association, and the national farmers federation to adjust this year’s fruit distribution plan, affected by logistics and export issues.
The ministry of commerce aims to place more emphasis on domestic markets through online and offline marketing, and will help supply fresh produce to markets, shopping malls and the aforementioned grocery delivery trucks.
Provincial commercial affairs officials have reportedly been turned into salespersons for produce in their province.
Thailand Post will also be providing free transportation for at least 200 tonnes of fruit to help cooperatives, community enterprises, and farmers sell their produce online on Thailand Post Mart, as well as other e-commerce platforms including Lazada and Shopee.