has long been the main staple food providing dietary protein for
Thai people. Based on geographical differences, fishing
communities in Thailand can be grouped into two categories,
namely freshwater and marine.
Gulf of Thailand is highly productive due to the heavy nutrient
load of four major rivers and hundreds of small rivers and
streams which drain a catchment area inhabited by nearly 50
million people. Moreover, Thailand is near the vast marine
resources of the Pacific and Indian Oceans, enabling it to
operate one of the largest fish canning industries in the world.
Technologically, the Thai processing industry is among the world's
best, both public and private sectors realizing at an early
stage that product quality is a foremost consideration in any
export market. In 1989, exports of tuna topped nearly fourteen
billion baht, a seven-fold increase over 1984's output,
importers being the U.S., U.K., Germany, Canada, Holland,
Malaysia, and Finland. Thai tunas reputation for quality, an
established and up-to-date canning component, and highly skilled
but cost-competitive workforce should be able to maintain this
impressive performance for some time to come.
dwarfed by tunas huge export figures, other canned seafood
products are also clam, for example, though they will never
match tuna in volume, are significant and growing in terms of
value. In 1989, canned shrimp earned more than two and half
billion baht in foreign exchange; about 68,505 tons of frozen
shrimp was also exported, value at 15,402 million bath.