Department of Fisheries confidence in Thai Shrimp Industry – provides consumers with high quality and standard products, food safety, uses technological friendly to the environment with social responsibility

Article Administrator 2019-09-03

Department of Fisheries confidence in 
Thai Shrimp Industry – provides consumers with high quality and standard products, food safety, uses technological friendly to the environment 
with social responsibility

"Sustainability trend" is one of the critical issues that consumers around the world are aware of, “food security” “food safety" "resource sustainability and environmental impact", as well as "good labor practices" is included. As the world's largest producer of aquatic products, Thailand has given priority to "sustainability", in this way, production of quality food to meets international standards with regard to food safety, environmentally friendly and social responsibility for building consumer confidence has been attached the importance. Under the Royal Ordinance on Fisheries 2015 and its amendment, Thailand has implemented a systematic fishery reform encompassing fisheries, aquaculture, processing, as well as traceability systems in order to strengthen fishery development and to head towards the sustainability. Especially for aquaculture promotion, its objectives have clearly been defined to “taking into account the economic, social and environment in long-term, maintaining the balance of the ecosystem, and enhancing consumer confidence in quality and hygiene of aquaculture products", this is to ensure that any aquaculture promotion will aim to "sustainability".

Dr. Adisorn Promthep, the Director-General of the Department of Fisheries, said that "marine shrimp" is an important economic species that generate incomes into Thailand from its exports. Thailand has encountered many problems, whether they be environmental challenges, disease outbreak crisis causing the decrease of the competitiveness of Thailand in the global market. However, the Department of Fisheries confidence that the "Thai shrimps" are still in high demand in the global market, therefore,  to ensure the sustainability of the Thai shrimp aquaculture industry, under the Royal Ordinance on Fisheries 2015 and its amendment, shrimp aquaculture has been controlled to guarantee the quality of aquaculture process and to prevent environmental impact or harm to consumers and the industry by starting from;

Aquaculture zoning process: the Provincial Fisheries Committee will determine the appropriate area for marine shrimp aquaculture to ensure that there will be no shrimp farming operations in the areas where it may cause the impact to the environment or the other business. The entrepreneurs shall apply for their shrimp farm registration to the Department of Fisheries. They must provide the Department of Fisheries with the certificate of land ownership and the farms must not be located in mangrove or conservation areas. These regulations reflect the strictness of law enforcement to protect the environment in Thailand.

Aquaculture control process: The Department of Fisheries has implemented Good Aquaculture Practices (GAP) and Thai Agricultural Standard (TAS) 7422 - 2018 for marine shrimp hatchery and nursery establishments which is one of the national standards to certify farm standards. This standard covers every step in practice from hatcheries, grow-out farms, harvesting, and processing in order to get standard and good quality shrimp production, and safety for consumers.

The Department of Fisheries encourages shrimp farmers to culture shrimp by using a water recirculation system in a closed system to reduce the use of natural water and discharge of wastewater into environment. Wastewater from the pond will be treated using biological technology before recirculating,  utilizing effective probiotic is also supported for the degradation of organic matter and control of pathogenic bacteria in order to reduce drugs and chemicals used for aquaculture.

Process for diseases monitoring in aquatic animals and chemicals used for aquaculture: regarding the problems on "disease", the Department of Fisheries has conducted lot by lot inspection of shrimp larvae in every production lot to certify their disease-free status. Accordingly, farmers can access good quality and disease-free shrimp larvae. Moreover, the national measures to monitor inputs using in aquaculture has been laid down, including a plan to inspect drugs and chemicals used in farms and released in input stores. Besides, the regular monitoring for drug and chemical used in aquaculture systems has been implemented.

The final process is the exploitation of labour in shrimp industry: the Department of Fisheries cooperate with all sectors, in order to promote the implementation of the Good Labour Practices (GLP), which complies to the labour laws on the issues of child labour, slave labour, and forced labour.

Upon the aforementioned process, it can guarantee that "marine shrimp aquaculture of Thailand" has been operated friendly with the environment, free from drugs and antibiotic residues. Marine shrimp distributed in both domestic and international markets can be traced throughout the production line and this will be an important basis of "Thai shrimp" to secure the further step.

The Director-General of the Department of Fisheries concluded that Thai marine shrimp industry relates three major components: upstream, midstream and downstream, as well as a number of stakeholders, farmers, establishments, and exporters (from farm to table). The mutual trust and cooperation from all sectors will be an important condition to support the management of Thai shrimp aquaculture towards sustainability in the future,  it will also contribute to the sustainability of the farmer careers and other stakeholders throughout the supply chain.

written by the Department of Fisheries, Thailand
published by Gnews