The government has a policy of “Public-Private Collaboration,” a systematic integration between the government and various sectors, geared toward the reduction of inequality, the development of human capital, and the increase in competitiveness.
In this vein, the government has established a total of 12 working groups comprising
- Working Group for Innovation and Productivity Enhancement
- Working Group for SMEs and Start-up Promotion
- Working Group for Tourism and MICE Promotion
- Working Group for Export and Outbound Investment Promotion
- Working Group for S-Curve Industrial Clusters Development
- Working Group for Modern Agriculture
- Working Group for FDI and Infrastructure Development
- Working Group for Workforce Quality Enhancement
- Working Group for Local Economic Development and Pracharath Policy
- Working Group for Law and Regulation Reform
- Working Group for Basic Education and Leadership Development
- Working Group for the Pracharath Policy for Society
The working group embraces the principles put forth by King Bhumibol Adulyadej of “Understand, Reach Out, Develop.” This means that prior to the execution of a development project, there needs to be an understanding of locals and outreach to gauge their wants and needs, which will form the guidelines for resolving the problems at hand. This way, development will correspond to the needs of the people, resulting in their happiness and sufficient income to support their families, while at the same time enabling them to help others and society in a sustainable manner.
In its approach, the working group adheres to the principles of Sufficiency Economy Philosophy. These principles, when combined with the “Pracharath” mechanism, characterized by cooperation between all sectors (that is, the public sector, the private sector, the civil society sector, the academic sector, and the people), can concretely bring society closer to the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations (SDGs). In addition, they can help push the development of Thailand toward a value-based economy under the Thailand 4.0 model. As the working group’s leader from the private sector, ThaiBev has a high level of commitment to push the “Public-Private Collaboration” work forward to generate income and increase the happiness of local people in a stable and sustainable manner.
To propel the work forward with efficiency, concrete results and long-term viability, the Working Group for Local Economic Development and Pracharath Policy pushed for the establishment of “Social Enterprise” under the name “Pracharath Rak Samakkee (The State and the People Love Harmony)” in every province and established PRS Social Enterprise (Thailand) Company Limited to be the central unit for coordination between various sectors throughout the country. The PRS Social Enterprise network has been fully established across the country since November 2016.
In addition, Thailand’s Ministry of Interior also organizes provincial committees for coordinating and driving public-private collaboration in order to support the work of every collaborative project at the provincial level. These provincial committees work with all local sectors, with the Province Governor at the core and with representatives from various provincial government units, such as development offices, agriculture offices, commerce offices, and tourism offices, among others, in collaboration with the private sector, the civil society sector, the academic sector, and the people in the province. Together, they propel the work and make use of the province’s PRS Company to help strengthen and support community businesses in the target communities.
As for the work at the local level to develop 3 groups of community businesses, namely agriculture, processing, and community-based tourism, the Working Group for Local Economic Development and Pracharath Policy has assigned PRS Social Enterprise (Thailand) Company Limited the work of implementing the “Collaboration for Our Hometowns” project in order to foster a new generation of community business developers in their twenties, so that they build their leadership skills, problem-solving skills, and a desire to develop their hometown. For 2 months, community business developers in training learn about community business management skills and area-specific community development, before being sent to do real work in their hometowns. Currently, there are two cohorts of community business developers, each with 76 trainees who have put their training to use in developing their home communities, in collaboration with various sectors in the province. Furthermore, these trainees help create understanding about the “public-private collaboration” approach among youth and people of the new generation.
Throughout the past year, all 76 provincial PRS Social Enterprise companies have already done more than 500 projects to develop community businesses throughout the country. These projects can be divided along 3 categories: agriculture (35%), processing (49%), and tourism (15%). The projects have generated income for 30,000 households in the network, totaling 58 million baht.
focuses on creating added value on 4 fronts, namely: the raising of awareness of and interest in hand-woven pakaoma in both domestic and foreign consumer groups; the proliferation of innovations in production and processing of hand-woven pakaoma in order to increase variety in usage; knowledge exchanges between communities and experts in various fields, on topics such as the use of natural dyes and packaging development; and lastly, the protection of the intellectual property rights of communities by copyrighted designs, trademarks, and patents.
This project also holds various activities to achieve project goals, such as:
- Organizing a pakaoma contest with more than 500 participating communities nationwide
- A workshop for pakaoma weaving communities to introduce new techniques in production for adding value to pakaoma products
- Sponsoring the project to present 30 hand-woven Thai pakaoma outfits on an international fashion runway at Amazon Fashion Week TOKYO 2017, and organizing a contest for university students to design evening gowns made from pakaoma
- Coordinating the procedures of copyrighting, trademarking, and patenting textile designs and petty patenting folding looms for 22 weaving communities
- Development of pakaoma products and making sales connections with large organizations such as ThaiBev, the Stock Exchange of Thailand, Tesco Lotus, etc.
is part of our approach to adding value to rice products to generate income for farmers through innovations that have the power to change the ways Thai people eat rice, create direct links between farmers and consumers, inform consumers about over 90 rice breeds in Thailand, and each breed’s nutritional value and unique flavor.
This is made possible by research into unique rice breeds, as well as public relations events throughout 2017, such as the event “Fresh Rice Creates Happiness” featuring rice consumption promotion activities and the debut of household rice milling machines, held between August 17-20 at 3 centrally-located shopping malls in Bangkok. At this event, in addition to activities promoting organic rice, including indigenous rice breeds and various processed rice products, and apart from the introduction of household rice mills, direct income was also generated for 30 communities nationwide, totaling 600,000 baht.
Currently, plans have been put in place with partners to create a supply chain for the consumption of unhusked rice, and develop unhusked rice packaging to be used in combination with household rice mills, along with finding distribution channels for consumers nationwide.
3. Hospital Food Safety Project
by PRS Social Enterprise (Thailand) Company Limited, established in cooperation with the Ministry of Public Health, the Ministry of the Interior, the Ministry of Commerce, the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives, and the Community Organizations Development Institute (Public Organization), promoting safety in food production and consumption. The project uses public hospitals under the Ministry of Public Health as primary drivers, by their direct purchase of vegetables, fruits, and food products from producers and random testing of toxicity levels in food.
The project has started in 116 province-level hospitals in 2017 and is going to extend to cover all 780 district-level hospitals by 2018. This program is aimed at modifying farmers’ production methods, reducing the use of chemicals to a safe level for producers and consumers, as well as promoting organic farming processes.
The PRS Social Enterprise Company Limited of each province is tasked with the duty of linking participating hospitals to already-certified farming communities, and of persuading other farmers to improve their production standards to meet the project requirements.
4. PRS Lab Project
PRS Social Enterprise (Thailand) Company Limited signed a contract in cooperation with Central Laboratory (Thailand) Co., Ltd. to support residue inspection and the development of standards for agricultural goods, processed goods, food items and cosmetics produced by the local community, through a training program for producers and through free “PRS Lab” coupons to persuade producers to submit their products for quality inspection. At present, there are 18 province-level PRS companies participating in the project, which have already delivered more than 60 community products for inspection, estimated to be worth over 300,000 baht.
By the end of 2017, it is estimated that more than 1,000 products will have been submitted for quality inspection. The value of community product inspection and development is estimated to be 5,000,000 baht.
The Phuket Lobster Festival 2017 held in August 2017 generated more than 24,000,000 baht in income for the community during the low season for tourism. The number of Phuket hotels and restaurants participating in the project rose from 35 in 2016 to 200 in 2017. Hotels and restaurants in Phang Nga Province and Ranong Province are participating as partners as well. After the successful stimulation of popularity among consumers, the PRS Social Enterprise (Phuket) Company Limited is at present working with the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives in developing breeds and processes for raising lobsters more effectively, as well as working with the lobster farming communities to develop community-based tourism in the lobster farming areas.
2. Organic Agriculture, Nakhon Pathom Province
The year 2017 is the national occasion for consuming fresh vegetables and safe fruits, due to the enforcement of Good Agriculture Practices (GAP) and the expansion of organic agriculture by the promotion of increased production and the use of appropriate technology. Dovetailing with the Hospital Food Safety project, local farmers sent their products to hospitals, safe agriculture markets, and expanded into the high-end market and health-focused restaurants. Vegetables and fruits weighing 9,677 kilograms in total were sent to hospitals, an estimated value of 424,464 baht. (Data from April to August 2017.)
developing batik products in line with the needs of the batik market of Phuket Province and 10 southern provinces by adding batik onto other things like bags, and designing patterns that meet market demand. As well, the project connects and shares knowledge between the batik groups of 10 southern provinces through the organizing of Batik Design Week 2016 by which the batik groups of 10 southern provinces generated more than 1,900,000 baht in income. In 2017, connections were made between batik groups from 31 communities and the Hotels Association and the Tourist Business Association, in order to create sales channels for community products, resulting in a 24 million baht increase in revenue for communities.
2. Pan Tong Fried Peanuts, Roi Et Province
PRS Social Enterprise (Roi Et) Company Limited helped push Pan Tong Fried Peanuts to develop proper packaging for OTOP sales on aircraft. In addition, the Company helped expand peanut cultivation, expand group membership and increase production capacity to meet demand, while at the same time enhancing product quality to meet international standards.
PRS Social Enterprise (Chanthaburi) Company Limited, in cooperation with the Office of Community Development of Chanthaburi Province, sponsors and pushes for an exhibition project and community market “Thais Helping Thais Is How Thais Can Smile.” This project is aimed at raising the standards of the community market to be a model worthy of trust from the people, as well as creating opportunities for producers and small farmers with more sales channels. The Rare Snacks Community along Khlong Nong Bua is a historic community that has retained its identity for more than 100 years. Consisting of historic houses on both sides of the street, the community sells traditional foods and delicious traditional desserts that are hard to find nowadays. For example: kanom tit kho (purple sticky rice dumplings) and kanom hua lan (mung bean dumplings), which have already become a selling point for tourists. Throughout the project’s first year, no less than 240,000 baht per month in income has been generated for the community.
2. Dhamma Mileage Travel in Sap Si Thong, Chaiyaphum Province
Sap Si Thong District is one of four districts located around Lanka Mountain, a place with natural beauty, ways of life worth studying, and a community with ancient cultural traditions. It also has places for meditation, which are the heart and soul of the community. Therefore, the Working Group has sponsored and pushed for Sap Si Thong to become a Chaiyaphum tourist attraction through promotional activities and connections with various parties. The generated income from promoting community-based tourism in Sap Si Thong District, together with the sale of agricultural products in the area, equals an increase in revenue of 50,000 baht each month.
3. King Cobra Village Tourism, Baan Khok Sa-nga, Khon Kaen Province
The PRS Social Enterprise (Khon Kaen) Company Limited and Office of Community Development Khon Kaen province organized a community forum on sustainable development for the management group of the King Cobra Village community. At present, the forum has enabled the King Cobra Village to establish a show and to collect admission tickets with the following prices: adults 40 baht, children 20 baht, and foreigners 100 baht, ensuring regular income per month for the group. Revenue has increased by almost 8 times per visiting tourist. In addition, this led to the renovation of the entryway to the site, an online webpage for the group, connections to handicraft groups close to the village who were brought in to produce souvenirs, and other internal administrative arrangements. Income generated for the community totaled more than 290,000 baht.
Comparison of Revenue from Sale of King Cobra Show Tickets (in baht)
In addition to the work in these three categories, the Working Group for Local Economic Development and Pracharath Policy (E3) and ThaiBev organized another project: One Tambon One Product Junior (OTOP Junior). A collaboration between the work of the Working Group for Local Economic Development and Pracharath Policy (E3) and the Working Group for Basic Education and Leadership Development (E5), OTOP Junior has the objective of improving learning achievements by a child-centered educational method and hands-on practice of occupational activities in line with the Sufficiency Economy Philosophy.
This elevates the OTOP Junior products from the children’s creativity into real value in the marketplace. By incorporating lessons about household bookkeeping and project accounting, the project hopes to build fiscal responsibility and generate income for the children and their families, ultimately strengthening the foundations for developing quality of life and fostering resilience so that students grow up to be quality citizens and be of value to society.