Friday, March 7, 2014
THAI SHRIMP GUARANTY
Thailand shrimp production
Marine shrimp has been an important agricultural export product of Thailand for the last decades. In 2012, Thai shrimp harvest is likely to yield 480,000 tons, while shrimp exports will expand to 380,000 tons worth more than 80 billion baht (around 4 billion US dollars). Thailand has been the number one country of the world largest shrimp exporter mainly white shrimp with 30% of global market share. Thailand’s major market destinations for shrimp exports are the United States, Japan and countries in the European Union with 46 %, 25 % and 18 % respectively.
This shrimp industry is not only to bring in revenues to the country but also provide career opportunities for the whole supply chain for more than one million people in Thailand.
The aquaculture sector is dominated by small scale farmers in coastal and inland areas. Of the estimated 19,150 shrimp farmers in Thailand, an estimated 15,320 (85%) are categorized as small-scale, with holdings of less than 1.6 ha. The aquaculture sector thus contributes significantly to rural income and employment.
In line with increasing exports, Thailand has initiated various standards and quality control measures to meet the increasingly high food safety and to maintain competitiveness in international trade. These measures include the Code of Conduct (CoC), Good Aquaculture Practice (GAP) and the new national standard GAP 7401. Certification schemes against these standards have also been implemented by the Aquaculture Development Center (ADCC) which has been accredited by the national accreditation body as certification body complying with ISO/EIC Guide 65 since 2012.
For traceability system development, DOF has put an effort to develop the concept as well as the documentation for shrimp and fish production. As for the shrimp production, in particular marine shrimp, the concept of traceability has been developed with the assistance of French Government by French experts under Thai-French Cooperation program since year 2002.
includes the whole supply chain from farm to processing level including feed utilization, hatchery and farm operations, shrimp collectors/distributors, and processors. Moreover, at the Departmental level, to some extent, traceability system using documentation known as “Movement document” or MD has been used among the four steps, from hatchery to farm via shrimp distributors to processing levels.
However, paper traceability has not been complete for the whole supply chain. The elements of raw materials to feed production and feed distribution to hatchery or farm have not been included.
With the need of global market for the quality and safety products, the better and more efficient traceability system has become a pre-requisite for Thailand whom known as one of the top shrimp exporter of the world. Computerized Traceability System (CTS) are now very well accepted and efficient in the global market. Combining the French experience on technology on traceability system with the existing strength of Thai food safety and quality program in producing quality shrimp, it has enabled to establish an innovative traceability system for quality shrimp products for Thailand namely TraceShrimp.
Thai quality shrimp standards: CoC, GAP and GAP 7401
In Thailand, the Thai National Shrimp Certification Scheme had been developed since the last decade. As a matter of fact, the World Bank (2005) mentioned that Thailand has taken a proactive strategy to access high-end markets by building its national reputation as a producer of safe quality products. The strategy pursued by the Department of Fisheries of Thailand (DOF) consisted in developing two standards for sustainable shrimp aquaculture: the
Code of Conduct (CoC))
Good Aquaculture Practice (GAP)
have been developed in 1998 and 2000 respectively. These two standards have incorporated the various international standards including those from the Codex Alimentarius, ISO 14001 standard, and relevant FAO codes.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives through the National Bureau of Agricultural Commodity and Food Standards (ACFS), a national standard setting body, formed a technical committee which initiated a review of the Thai National Shrimp Standard using as basis the draft FAO Guidelines on Aquaculture Certification. Subsequently, the ACFS released the Thai Agricultural Standard (TAS 7401- 2009) also called GAP 74014 on Good Aquaculture Practices for Marine Shrimp
Shrimp farmers have generally known the new Thai Shrimp GAP or Thai National Shrimp GAP (GAP 7401) since 2009. The DOF also reviewed its role in certification since 2008 with the Aquaculture Development and Certification Center (ADCC) serving as a certification body using ISO/IEC Guide 65 in setting up the certification system for Thai aquaculture shrimp and fish. The ACFS plays an important role in serving as an accreditation body using the ISO/IEC 17011 as basis for the development of the accreditation system which also applies to the shrimp certification scheme
CoC, GAP and TAS 7401-2009 (GAP 7401) standards provide guidelines to produce safe and good quality marine shrimp for consumers; shrimp farms must be standardized, clean, and sanitary and generate less environmental impacts. Furthermore, therapeutic and chemical agents leading to residues must be avoided in shrimp health management.
CoC, GAP and TAS 7401-2009 (GAP 7401) standards are meant to address the environmental management issues in aquafarming systems and those of aquafarms’ neighboring areas, shrimp disease control, as well as the concept of antibiotics-free shrimp production and traceability. Under the responsibility of the DOF, the promotion of such standards had been carried out through its Thai Quality Shrimp Program.