Food security status definition,risk assessment raw materials food,organics studio arsenic - Downloads 2016

Author: admin, 23.03.2016. Category: Gardening

Agricultural development policy in Thailand over the past few decades has been importantly concerned not only with the country's food security, but also with its export earnings.
Key words: Thailand, food security, agricultural policy, rural poor vulnerability, policy options. Despite remarkable success in economic growth and poverty reduction in Asia, a large proportion of the Asia-Pacific region has problems with food. Crop structure in Thailand has slightly adjusted toward a declining trend of rice area and the increasing trend of tree crop areas as a result of better net returns compared to rice. During the past few decades, the cultivated areas of rice slowly increased from 8.15 million has.
Beside those grain crops, cassava, sugarcane and palm oil are also sugarcane of paramount importance. While Thailand is able to produce enough rice to support the population, some vulnerable households still have inadequate consumption to meet the energy and nutritional needs, particularly in the rural area where food production originated7. Expansion of Thailand's agriculture and food production in the past has been accompanied by a massive investment in public infrastructure.
The development of modern irrigation system in Thailand began when the Chao Phraya Project was constructed in 1951.
A potential for further expansion of irrigated area is limited because of rapid increase in the cost of irrigation development, and the growing concern for adverse environmental conditions of irrigation projects. Government investment in agricultural research induced the changes in agricultural structure. The task of rice research since the late 1960s was focused on improving the yield per hectare in irrigated areas by using the outputs from the international research, particularly the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI). The major change in government agricultural policy occurred in 1986 when the pro-consumer policy was replaced by the pro-producer policy.
12 which penalized the farmers were eliminated, resulting in the more or less neutral nominal rate of protection for most exportable crops, except a few imported competing crops such as palm oil and soybean (Poapongsakorn, 2009; Warr and Archanun, 2007). 14 had an initial objective to provide a soft loan at low interest rate for farmers who needed cash at the early harvesting season so that the farmers can keep their products from the market at harvest and delay sales until prices rise later in the season. The major change in the schemed occurred in 2001 when the government by that time drastically raised the pledge price to 120 to 130% of the market price, thus changing the program to the price support one. In the early 2008 during the rice market volatility, the pledged price was again set at the very high record of 14,000 baht (or 406US$) per ton, causing the government's rice stock to jump markedly. Poapongsakorn(2009) indicated that the program only increases the farm price in the harvesting period but depresses the market price later in the season when the government releases the rice in the market.
Previously, the agricultural credit market in Thailand was dominated by informal lenders, particularly land owners, middlemen, and millers (Thisayamondol et al., 1965).
The credit policy has significantly impacted on the farmers' adoption of modern technologies as well as crop diversifications, particularly in irrigated areas of Central Plain.
During 1980s and 1990s, Thailand faced a continuously declining trend of rice price despite some years of interruption as a result of the green revolution technology impact. A concern of declined world rice stock appeared in early 2008 which immediately drove the rice price in the international market.
In Thailand, it is a sign of concern that the impact of the green revolution technology would soon fade out since the technology has already been fully exploited to favor production environments. Production cost generally reflects the amount of input use in a production process and their input prices. Siamwalla (2004) shows that those who left agriculture did not return to their farm land, particularly male workers, leaving their old aged parents at the farm.
In the commercial rice bowl, almost every step in the procedure of rice production is mechanized and the rice production employs minimum man-hours of labor.
A scarcity of fossil fuel becomes more apparent and alarming by the rising price trend of fossil fuel.
In Thailand, government also subsidized the use of bio-fuel by reducing the excise tax on both gasohol and biodiesel, causing the price distortion between renewable energy market and fossil energy market.
The higher price of energy crop has recently induced the change in crop structure toward the increasing cultivation of bio-energy crops, particularly palm oil and cassava due to a relatively higher return from these grown crops.
On the successful submission of the above details, Telangana Ration Card details of the individual will be displayed on the screen.
Any other criterion which the verification officer may assess by the manner of his lifestyle, occupation and possession of assets rendering him as ineligible. It matters what kinds of food are available.  Trade liberalization may increase the availability of imported foods with undesirable characteristics such as processed foods with a high content of fats and sweeteners.
Enhancing consumption diversity, and in that way reducing nutrient deficiencies, are particularly important on semi-subsistence farms and isolated local wet markets where the diet may consist of one or two basic staples. The nutrition value of foods may be improved by industrial fortification and biofortification.
So, while food availability is necessary for good nutrition, changes in food availability will not have any impact on nutrition unless the actual or potentially malnourished people have access.
Changes in the food system may affect incomes of the actual or potentially malnourished people in several ways. Changes in food and nonfood prices will influence a household’s purchasing power and as such its access to food.
Improved knowledge regarding nutrition and its relations to the food system is needed for all food system agents, including consumers, farmers, traders and policy-makers. Improved knowledge regarding food storage, processing and transportation may be effective in improving nutrition and food safety. Opportunities in the food system for improving—or potentially harming—the nutritional status of pregnant and lactating women and children during the first two years of life are often related to how the food system affects women’s time allocation.
Thus, changes in the food system should consider the net effect of changes in women’s time before introducing new demands for women’s work. Neither availability of sufficient food, nor household access to it, assures good nutrition. Efforts to enhance the nutrition impact of food systems should never forget that the food system is driven by economic demand and production possibilities and not nutrition goals.  Thus, to be successful, such efforts should aim to change either economic demand or production possibilities or both. Improvements in agricultural infrastructure by that time, particularly irrigation system and road network, coupled with a rapid dissemination of green revolution technology during early 1970s till 1980s have significantly accelerated the growth in agricultural sector as well as the country's food supply. Nonetheless the country's resources, particularly land and labor, are still largely allocated for agriculture and food production. The share of upland crop area increased during 1980s but this has continuously declined since 1990s due to high production cost and low output price. An exhaustion of agricultural land in the early 1980s and the water scarcity in early 1990s have consequently reduced the expansion of cultivated land area despite the rising share of dry season crop area. A development of large scale poultry production in the recent past has significantly made the surplus of its domestic supply for both poultry and fisheries. A large surplus of domestic rice supply has recently pressured the government to switch from the consumer-oriented food policy to the producer-led food policy in the past few decades. The domestic consumption of corn and soybeans are larger than the country's production supply, particularly soybeans. The problem of food poverty in Thailand is highly concentrated in the rural North and Northeast parts. Numbers of people affected by food poverty increased during 1998-00 (after the financial crisis in 1997) and during 2004-06 (after the rise in food inflation). The project was to benefit the lowland rice farmers in the Central Plain (Isvilanonda and Poapongsakorn, 1995). High investment costs, long gestation period and low rates of return on investment in a later period led to the shift in investment priorities to small scale projects during 1990s and 2000s, resulting in a slower growth in irrigated area since the 6th plan.
During the 7th and 8th National Economic and Social Development plans (1992-96 and 1997-01), the Royal Irrigation Department did concentrate on improving water distribution system for both state owned and private irrigation projects rather than constructing new ones.
This helped to facilitate the reclamation of new farmlands and improve the marketing efficiency of agricultural products. The Department of Agriculture was the lead agency for agricultural research and development of new technologies. A declining rice price has resulted the government in spending less investment in rice research.
Since then the governments have increased the agricultural subsidy through the agricultural price support program with the aim of improving farmers' income. However, the operation scale was very small and could not support the farmers due to lack of budget. The paddy was kept at the on-farm storage which is rented by the BAAC (Poapongsakorn and Isvilanonda, 2008). Furthermore, the increase in the share of pledged paddy has reduced the supply of paddy to be handled by the market, thus, reducing the number of local rice traders and central paddy markets which are operated by private sectors.
A drastic change in agricultural credit market occurred in 1975 when the Bank of Thailand (BOT) instructed all commercial banks to allocate 5% of all commercial loans for agriculture at an interest rate which is lower than the market.
Because farmers in irrigated areas have a better cash flow and less production risk, a large proportion of credit goes to commercial farmers.
Public policies on chemical fertilizers mainly involved their distribution to the farmers at the prevailing marketing price or at reduced costs.
The situation by that time led some major rice exporting countries, such as India, China, and Vietnam worried with their own respective food security. Labor and machinery, fertilizer, and land are among the factors that cause major changes in rice production cost components.

The country's economic development, particularly a higher growth in non-agriculture items over the past few decades, have consistently stimulated young farmers to leave farm areas as industrial workers.
Isvilanonda and Kao-ent (2009) finds that the labor use in rice production has declined from 392 man-hours per ha in 1980 to 56 man-hours per ha in 2007. Many countries are aware of the future threat to the energy crisis and prepare for a development of alternative energy source.
Thailand produced ethanol for gasohol by using molasses from sugar production and using cassava chips from cassava roots.
Mostly, the increase stemmed from the production area of palm oil and cassava but not for maize, soybean, and sugarcane.
Applicants can check Ration card status online with Aadhaar card and old ration card number. The Government of TG has taken application for Ahara Bhadratha Cards in place of existing Ration cards. These details includes application number, Head of the family, SKS Form Number (Samagra Kutumba Survey Form Number), House Number, Address, Mobile Number. They exist to help people and societies meet a variety of goals, including but not limited to, good nutrition.
The behavior of food system agents, including consumers, farmers, and traders, mitigate the nutrition effects. Investments in research and processing may develop new products beneficial or harmful to nutrition.
As shown in Figure 2, access, or the ability of households to acquire the food available, is influenced by incomes, own production, food prices, availability and prices of nonfoods and social safety nets. First, research and technology may generate an economic surplus by improving productivity of land, water or labor, not only in agriculture but in other parts of the food system.
Nutrition education for consumers has been a commonly used tool to improve nutrition with limited success.
Projects and policies often seek to empower women and improve their wellbeing as well as that of children by attempting to generate employment.  However, some food system practices make breastfeeding, which is critically important during the first six months of life and beyond, very difficult either because employment takes the lactating mother away from the baby for long periods or because the employment activities are otherwise incompatible with breastfeeding.
Introduction of labor-saving and productivity-enhancing technologies for the work traditionally done by women, such as herbicides to replace weeding, improved equipment for food processing, better access to water and fuel and rural infrastructure to improve food marketing and the time needed to bring food to the market as well as child care facilities appropriate for the particular situation, are examples of actions that could be considered.
The extent to which food access is translated into actual food consumption by at-risk household members is determined by household behavior and the allocation of the food within the household. In terms of food accessibility, however, especially at the household level, it remains a problem, particularly in the rural remote areas. Many countries inevitably manage policies for ensuring an adequate availability of basic food products, particularly staple food grains, on the national level or enhancing access to the minimum food requirement at the household level.
However, the higher growth of non-agricultural products in a later period inevitably reduced the share of agriculture in the national economy.
Agriculture is not only for an income source of farm households, but also as a source of the country's export earnings.
Their average annual income in 2006 was 196,389 baht (5,692 US$) per household or about 49,719 baht (1,441 US$) per capita. Both the increase in rice cropping intensity and the adoption of modern rice varieties (MVs) since the early 1970s have generated the growth in production, even though there was a diminishing growth in the cultivated area. In recent years, Thailand is self sufficient in terms of beef, pork, and fresh milk production but not for powder and infant milk. Even though the poorest subsistence farmers generally consume more than half of their own production, all food needs cannot be met by their production8. In Thailand, most large and medium-scale irrigation projects were implemented by the government under the economic and social development plans.
Improving the efficiency in water management and collection of water charges were also mentioned as its key objectives. Such investments have later facilitated rural-urban and rural-rural migration to take advantage of the seasonal and spatial variation in employment opportunities.
Thus, during 2001-05, the budget declined to 278.72 million baht, resulting in a negative growth for rice research during this period. Siamwalla and Na Ranong (1990) criticized that a maximum guarantee price was even lowered than the market price when it fell. The program was later extended to cover farmers who do not have their own rice barn by allowing them to pledge their paddy either at the Farmer Market Organization or the Public Warehouse Organization (PWO). But, the pledged price was still 20% higher than the market price, causing the government's rice stock to jump markedly. It would certainly create the instability of food supply and food price in the longer-run as a result of market inefficiency. Even though group liability guarantee could help small-farmers to access formal credit, the amount of loan for these poor farmers obtained is very small and limited. Thanks to the productivity improvement and increasing cropping intensity from the green revolution technology that helped maintain competitiveness in the Thai rice industry over the past few decades. Particularly, when the rice price hikes, the rental rate of land increases due to fixed payment in paddy per ha. The rice farmers responded to the labor shortage by adopting the machinery in farm operations. At the same time, the use of machinery has risen from 7 machine-hours per ha to 46 machine-hours per ha.
A policy toward renewable bio-energy has strong endorsement in many countries, particularly the USA, the EU, and Brazil. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration, Maternal and Child Health Bureau. Public and private investments in the food marketing sector may also improve food safety and quality.
Support of home gardens would be another initiative to be considered as would the promotion of the production, marketing and consumption of animal products such as beef, poultry, pork, goat and sheep meat, and milk and plant-based foods with high density of nutrients such as grain legumes.
On the other hand, the impact of biofortification depends on farmers’ adoption of the fortified seed, and consumers’ acceptance, ability and willingness to pay a higher price if necessary. Depending on supply and demand, elasticities and market structure, conduct and performance, the surplus may result in higher incomes (in cash or kind) for farmers, traders and other food system agents, lower prices for consumers or, most likely, a combination of the two as exemplified by the effects of the Green Revolution.
Lower prices for one food commodity relative to the price of another will usually increase consumption of the former and reduce the consumption of the latter. For example, taxes on meat, vegetable oil, sugar and sweeteners may reduce the risks of chronic disease among low-and high-income people while increasing the deficiency of iron, essential fatty acids and dietary energy in low-income population groups.
As might be expected, free-standing nutrition education programs will only be successful where lack of knowledge is the most limiting factor for good nutrition. Furthermore, employment creation by women may harm nutrition by reducing their time available for other important nutrition-related activities such as care, cooking, fetching water and firewood and agricultural work.
In addition to the nutritional content of the food allocated to the individual and the extent to which it matches the needs, the nutrition effect of the allocated food depends on the quality of the available water, sanitation, the prevalence of infectious diseases and other nutrition-related factors.
A recent increase in food price and production cost has inevitably impacted on Thailand's rural poor. Agricultural development based on increases in productivity and incomes, is a key driver to achieve these elements of food security. In terms of crop area, rice constitutes nearly 60% of the total cultivated area in 2001-07. This amount of income is 1 time lower than the self-employed non-farm workers and three times lower than that of the blue collar workers. Since the region is located in a plateau, rice area in this region adopts to the rain-fed ecology with mainly one rice crop a year. According to Isvilanonda and Kongrith (2008), the average per capita rice consumptionof Thai households is 101kg. It was reported that during 1966-70 and 1986-91, the average budget for road construction and improvement had increased from 11,000 to 74,000 baht per ha (Isvilanonda and Poapongsakorn, 1995). Although it is difficult to separate the research budget from the institution budget, around 50% was however used for conducting the research. The farmers receive the loan for their pledged paddy at the net interest cost of 3% per annum but applied only pledging period normally not beyond 7 months. After a military coup in 2006, the pledge price was reduced to below the market price, thus substantially reducing the amount of pledged paddy to 1.8 million tons. Thus, small-farmers are more difficult to improve their household food supply, particularly when facing with the food price increase.
The government has previously used the Market Organization for Farmers (MOF) and agricultural cooperatives as a network to distribute the fertilizer with a subsidized transportation cost. The fuel cost is implicit in the rental rate of machine which is mostly in terms of a piece rate contract and adjusted according to the fuel cost.
Custom service for combined harvesters is commonly found in the irrigated areas for harvesting and threshing. Since farmers are more dependent on farm mechanization, a recent sharp increase in fuel price inevitably led to the shoot up of production cost.
Different forms of subsidies to promote and encourage the use of gasoline and biodiesel stimulated the rise in demand for bio-fuel, creating an alternative use of food crops for energy production, particularly, corn and soybean in USA and sugarcane in Brazil.
The fuel demand for both gasohol and biodiesel has sharply increased due to the high fossil fuel price.
Understanding these pathways and how they operate is essential to design agricultural and other food system policies to achieve nutrition goals.

However, as shown in Figure 2, the nutrition effect of changes in these factors will depend on several other components of the pathways. Availability of protein-dense plant-based foods, meat, dairy products, fruits and vegetables may reduce nutrient deficiencies while availability of fats, oils, sugar, sweeteners and energy-dense, nutrient-poor foods may contribute to overweight, obesity and chronic diseases. In locations where water resources are available, the promotion of aquaculture may help improve diet diversity and improve nutrition both through fish and seafood consumption and income-generating sales. In addition to processing and fortification, the nutritional quality and safety of foods may be improved or deteriorated by action or lack of action in storage, transportation and other food system activities. Research and technology may also improve the nutritional quality of foods as exemplified by the above mentioned biofortification.
Unit-cost reducing technological change in food production, processing and marketing as well as commodity-specific taxes and subsidies and trade restrictions such as export restrictions and import duties are examples of policy interventions that may change relative prices.
If these foods are highly preferred by low-income households, such taxes may also reduce purchasing power and the consumption of other foods which are beneficial for nutrition such as fruits and vegetables. Educational efforts with all the right messages may be of no value if the new knowledge cannot be implemented because of time or income constraints. Therefore, the impact of changes in the food system on household food security (access) alone may not be a good indicator of nutrition impact. Food Policy in Developing Countries: The Role of Government in Global, National, and Local Food Systems. With a declining purchasing power, these poor households face the risk of food insecurity as they may reduce the food intake of more nutritious food.
In Thailand, agricultural development policy in the past has importantly been concerned not only with the country's food security, but also with global food security.
As a result, Thailand is not only a net exporter of agricultural and food products, but also one of the tenth major suppliers in the world food trade. The low income of farm and rural households have inevitably led them to living a poorer quality of life. This is higher than the rate of cultivated area growth as a result of increasing rice cropping intensity in flood prone environment. The annual production of soybeans is around 0.21 million tons, which is less than the domestic demand. Using this data to calculate the rice consumption at home, it is about 6.6 million tons6 of milled rice.
Since sugarcane is mostly used as a raw material in the sugar industry, the conversion of sugarcane into sugar products is about 6.54 million tons.
The major focus of rice research has been on increasing the yield for irrigated ecosystem, as well as for developing resistance against major insects and diseases. However, the government needs to subsidize 5% interest to the BAAC to make up for a total loan rate of 8% per annum.
The success of BAAC is attributed to an innovation of group liability guarantee which enabled small farmers to access the short-term credit without any land title deeds and collateral. Due to limited funds, a small number of farmers could access this program and most of them are farmers in irrigated environment. However, the increase in export price has inevitably resulted in the volatility of the domestic rice price, causing the country's high inflation rate.
During the 2007, rice price hike, the total rice production cost rose to about 40% (Isvilanonda and Kao-ent, 2009) and shifted up to a new base.
The use of food crops for energy production is one of the major causes of concern to stimulate the food price volatility.
Thus, merely pursuing changes in food availability and access will not assure the desired nutrition effects. A high degree of diversity in the food supply, whether from own production or the market, may facilitate consumption diversity and better nutrition. Before such commodity-specific policies are proposed, it is important to clearly specify the nutrition problem to be solved: Is it dietary energy deficiencies, nutrient deficiencies or obesity-related chronic diseases? Subsidies on fruits and vegetables may release purchasing power that could be used to acquire foods of lesser or negative nutrient value such as drinks high in sweeteners.
On the other hand, increased incomes, improved production diversity or reduced pressures on time may be of little or no nutrition value in the absence of the relevant knowledge.
Poverty reduction, or changes in income, women’s time allocation, prices and knowledge may likewise be poor nutrition indicators. The impact of rising food prices on agricultural households depends on whether they are net buyers of food. The production of food supply in Thailand, particularly rice, has enormously increased for more than the domestic demand and the surplus was exported. Moreover, many are affected by household food poverty and malnutrition (See section 2.4 below).
The domestic demand for soybeans is not only for the food industry but also for the feed industry as well. The rest is utilized for those consumed outside the home, industrial use, seed use, and animal feed use. The program had no impact on the small-farmers in remote areas since their eligibility was not met.
Small farmers, rural poor households, and wage earners who had very low income would inevitably be vulnerable to confront the issues of food insecurity and food poverty.
The complete pathway must be understood to help guide the food system for nutritional benefits. Increasing productivity and lower unit-costs of production and marketing as well as price subsidies for foods such as fruits, vegetables and animal source foods may reduce nutrient deficiencies. Therefore, nutrition education should in most cases be combined with other efforts to remove constraints to good nutrition. These factors serve as entry points for the food system – nutrition pathways, but do not themselves serve as proxies for nutrition impact. In the case of rice farming households, the share of net buyers was higher for households with smaller land holdings. Being a food surplus country at the macro level, food accessibility, however, at the household level still remains a problem, particularly in rural remote areas. Consequently, Thailand is a net importer of soybeans which is about 1.5 million tons annually. With a larger share of rain-fed ecosystem in rice production, the rice research policy should also pay more attention to the welfare of rain-fed farmers. As a consequence of rising fertilizer price and production cost, it is inescapable that the food production of small farmers would be affected most.
Adding production lost to plant and animal diseases and pest attacks in farmers’ fields, the large opportunities for expanding the food available for actual consumption become obvious. Increasing income and budget control by women is likely to increase the portion of household incomes dedicated to food, particularly as it relates to child feeding. Also, the poor rice farmers in Thailand were hardly hit by the higher production cost and input prices since their net profit largely declined.
The food availability and accessibility have been challenged by the global economic crisis, by climate change and by food-fuel crops. With a good irrigation system in this rice bowl region, farmers could grow 5 rice crops in two years by using a non-photoperiod sensitive varieties. About 65% of cassava root production was exported in the form of cassava chips, pellets and starch. The government hires the PWO and otherprivate warehouses to stock the paddy until it can sell the rice either domestically or in the world market.
It is found that while nearly two-thirds of their operating cost was paid, they only received one-tenth from the rice sold . In addition, the rise in global food prices in recent years has inevitably induced a sharply increase in the domestic food price, causing a high inflation rate. During 2005-07, bread and cereal expenditures (at constant price) grew by 1% whereas meat expenditures (at constant price) grew by 10% (NESDB 2008). The government also subsidized for the operation of the paddy pledging program and provided interest subsidy for farmers. For overcoming future impacts of high food price and rising production cost on rural poor, a provision of off-farm employment and micro-credit facilities with technical assistance and proper farm management plans should be targeted to small farmers and the rural poor.
In the longer-run, it is suggested that empowering small-scale farmer capacity building based on sufficiency economy concepts is necessary for further development. This can work if it is coupled with farm productivity enhancement through agricultural research investment and improvement of village-pool water resources including on-farm water resource management and investment. In addition, the small-farmers are the ones who are hardly hit by soaring input prices and rising production cost .
This paper aims to present the status of food security in Thailand and some of its policy options.
We also examine factors influencing instability and volatility of food prices as well as analysis impacts of soaring food prices and production cost on rural poor.

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