Big push planned for organic products

Economy July 08, 2017 01:00

By   THE NATION

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THE COMMERCE Ministry plans to enlist the support of Asean members to set up an Asean Organic Agriculture Federation aimed at boosting organic agricultural products in the regional market.



The proposed federation will also strive to improve the quality and standards of Asean organic agricultural products and also be an instrument to bargain in the global market, Commerce Minister Apiradi Tantraporn said yesterday.

Trade of Thai organic agricultural products were worth Bt2.7 billion last year, with Bt1 billion worth of exports and Bt1.7 billion from the domestic market. The Commerce Ministry expects organic agricultural products will achieve Bt3 billion this year, up 10 per cent from last year, with half of the total from exports, and the rest from the domestic market. 

Thai Organic Trade Association president Peerachot Charanwong said that the total global market for organic agricultural products was worth about US$140 billion (Bt4.8 trillion) with $60 billion in the US, Canada, and Europe, and $80 billion in Asian markets such as India, China, Japan and Asean. 

To drive sales of organic agricultural products in Asean, especially Thailand, the Commerce Ministry will organise the Organic and Natural Expo 2017 from July 27-30 at Queen Sirikit National Convention Center. The event will present Asean organic and agricultural products such as foods and beverages made from rice, vegetables, and fruit, and also will introduce other organic agricultural products for personal care, healthcare, and other areas. The ministry expects up to 45,000 visitors, generating trade value of Bt32 million at the event, with another Bt100 million of trade after the event, Apiradi said. 

She added that more than 200 Thai organic producers would join this event, while some 100 Asean organic agricultural producers would also display their products at the event. The event will also bring visitors and importers of organic agricultural products from around the world to participate and place orders. 

“We believe that this event will promote Thai organic agriculture and enable double-digit growth in exports annually,” Apiradi said.