IFTA Countries Partners Become Largest Market for Vegetables from Thailand

Despite economic stagnation and border closures due to COVID-19, Thailand remains ASEAN’s largest exporter of fresh refrigerated vegetables, while being 14th in the world.

Webinar invitation

The Netherlands Embassy in Bangkok is adding the following information below to the references below:

Thailand stays the key vegetables exporter for ASEAN market. The seed they use for vegetables production are imported from at least 3 international Dutch based seed companies (East-West Seed, Rijk Zwan, Enza Zaden). Growing vegetables in greenhouse (not fully high-tech equipped like in NL but tailor made to fit local circumstance) has been increased for both domestic market and export due to quality control and product safety management. The local growers have been transforming from rain fed vegetable growing in open field to more greenhouse (under cover / shade) in some high value crops (pepper, tomato for high end consumers for instance). It opens an opportunity for the Dutch suppliers (exporters) on relevant products & services in Thai market.

The Netherlands is an respected and well known international vegetable exporters & suppliers in many markets including Thailand and the rest of South East Asia. The embassy sees increase interest in the demand for onions, shallots, pepper and chilies. The local industry is using these products for processing, seasoning and ingredients.

The webinar below aims to share and exchange knowledge & experiences in the vegetables sector. The Netherlands is international key player in vegetables. The event might be interesting for for Dutch vegetable exporters, institutes to learn & share their opinion on FTA, import duty, market etc. Thailand organizes the webinar as part of UN Food System Submit 2021. It shows what is happening in the Thai vegetables sector as part of UNFSS2021 (UN Food System Submit 2021).

The Embassy is happy with the reception of many requests of Dutch companies regarding the vegetable sector in Thailand. The vegetables sector in Thailand are having socio-economic impact on millions of farmers and people in the value chain (post-harvest & logistic & packaging, breeding & production, processing (frozen, canned, chilled). The national policy on vegetables sector is not obviously seen in the national agenda by the national policy maker but private sector are doing their job. The information on Thai vegetable sector has been hardly available. This event is an alternative resources on vegetable system in Thailand.

Despite economic stagnation and border closures due to COVID-19, Thailand remains ASEAN’s largest exporter of fresh refrigerated vegetables, while being 14th in the world.

Trade Negotiations Department Director-General Oramon Sapthaweetham said from the January to June 2020 Thailand exports vegetables worth 143 million US Dollars, (9.7% decrease compared to the same period previous year). Countries with which Thailand has Free Trade Agreements (FTA) remain the largest markets, worth 94 million USD, or 66% of the country’s total vegetable exports. Among the FTA members, Japan is the biggest buyer (36%) while ASEAN countries combined make up 22% of the total export volume. Some of the popular products include fresh garlic and chilli with 124% and 33% growing export volume. Currently Thailand has FTA agreements with 17 countries, 13 of which no longer levy import duties on Thai vegetables. The 13 countries include China, Hong Kong, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Chile, Peru and 6 countries in ASEAN namely, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam, Myanmar and Brunei. Meanwhile, the five countries who are FTA partners, but still impose import duties, are South Korea, India, Cambodia, Laos and the Philippines.

Ref. www.thailand-business-news.com

“The vegetables sector in Thailand is having largely socio-economic impact on millions of farmers and people in the vegetable value chain (breeding, cultivation, post-harvest & logistic & packaging, processing (frozen, canned, chilled). The vegetable sector in Thailand has been transforming from rainfed vegetable growing in open field to more greenhouse (under cover / shading) under precision / digital agriculture especially pepper, tomato and fresh vegetables for salad industry and high end market. Greenhouse vegetable production  becomes a dialogue with positive attention on investment due to food safety and food security.  Unlike the Netherlands where fully high-tech equipped with digitalization control system, Thailand is trying to tailor made the innovation for greenhouse that fit under local tropical circumstance. The market demand on greenhouse vegetables in Thailand shows a growing trend especially the fresh vegetables for salad industry and tomato & pepper for QSR (Quick Service Restaurant like pizza, burger etc.). The seed for greenhouse vegetable production are mostly imported. ASEAN remains a potential market for international vegetables exporters for especially onion, shallot and pepper are needed by the food industry in ASEAN for both local and export market.”

Ref. Local Agri-Food Sources

To learn more on vegetables in Thailand in connecting to United Nations Food Systems Summit 2021,  Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives, Thailand (www.moac.go.th) together with World Vegetable Center (https://avrdc.org) cordially invite vegetable players to take part in the webinar “Should Thailand Have A National Vegetables Policy?”

Date : Thursday 13th May 2021

Time : 08:30 – 13:30 hrs. (GMT+7)

Registration (FREE): https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSftg-9gUbb4QFF0JFkV-YbvC_MQhmw0y9Bhg3BrwsYjseVqjQ/viewform?usp=sf_link