The Thai Food Complex: From the Rice Fields to Industrial and Organic Foods
Constitutes a fascinating paradox. Global companies such as CP and Red Bull have emerged side-by-side with more traditional rice growers. And not only are they all thriving together, they actually strengthen each other.
The author observes and analyzes the big picture in four main chapters:
• Thai Agriculture: A System of Smallholder Farmers
• The Food Processing Industry: Sino-Thai Businesses
• The World of Markets, from Village Brokers to International Traders
• Development Models and Alter-Green Revolutions
He demonstrates that it is the interaction between food farming, industry, and trading as well as pragmatic government strategies that enables their resilience and development. Thailand has become the largest food exporter in Asia; its cuisine is one of the most famous in the world.
Using an original cross-disciplinary approach combining geography and socioeconomics, the author denies determinism or linearity in the process of Thailand’s successful development. He instead views it as the outcome of various factors of alternative opportunities. Hence, the key success factor is not high performance but rather the multiplicity of strategic options available to the market players.
The author concludes that the need to safeguard such diversity of options should remain in the forefront of agricultural policy makers’thinking and decisions.