TRANSCRIPT - Anon Areerazde
Areerazde is the Manager of Samaphan Farm in Tumbol Nuen Pra,
Amphur Moung of the Rayong Province, Thailand.
How did your farm get started? What is your philosophy?
We have started
shrimp culture here since 1986 about 17 years ago. Before we started
the project we set up our conceptual plan that if we used the same
technique as in Taiwan we might fail and end up with same destination.
Our idea is to have sustainable production. We need to raise shrimp
by relying on nature without using chemicals. So we set up our two
principles. First is not to destroy the environment and second is
that we use no chemicals. From these two principles, we discover
many management techniques to apply to our shrimp culture.
Please give us details on your management.
Using our two
principles, not to destroy the environment and not to use any chemicals,
our management must use sufficient feed to try to make shrimp healthy
and strong. We emphasize a disease prevention scheme over the focus
of only curing those infected.
Why do you grow mangrove?
We know that
shrimp spend their larval stage in the mangrove area. We want to
simulate our farm to be close to the nature as much as we can.
What is the benefit of working as a cooperative?
When you face
a problem, there is someone that will help you solve the problem.
Also, you have more power to purchase things like shrimp feed. In
addition, there is a benefit when you sell your product, because
you get higher prices when you sell in big lots.
When did you start the project here?
Our group started our project in 1986. That makes it 17 years. This
proves that to rely on nature and not use chemicals helps us raise
shrimp for a long period of 17 years.
What do you think about the results of your culture system?
I think shrimp
culture in Thailand could be sustainable if people follow our two
In your opinion, how does this farm succeed?
We have had constant production during the past 17 years. Sometimes
we had problems, but only a few. I think we do the right thing.
The past 17 years is our best guarantee.
Shrimp farming has expanded to several countries like Vietnam
and Brazil. Many people complained that the environment will become
more destroyed. If they follow your principles, do you think shrimp
farming could be more accepted?
is just one among many other management groups. If everyone relies
on nature and the environment and avoids using chemicals, I think
shrimp culture should be done anywhere in the world.
How do you deal with the discharge?
The water discharge
from our farms will retain in our wetland where we grow the mangrove
in an area of 12 acres. Mangrove will use the nutrients and water
will settle down. If we help nature, nature will help us. Nothing
is greater than nature.
What about the sludge accumulated in the pond? How do you
deal with it?
During the culture
period, the sludge will accumulate at the middle of the pond. After
we harvest it, we will move this sludge to a sludge pond outside
of the farm. This sludge can be used as fertilizer in the orchard.
How can chemical-free, healthy shrimp yield a good price?
shrimp always has notorious chemical residue. But shrimp product
from our group especially COC group (Code of Conducts) is a chemical-free
product. Right now, we export 15 tons of our product to McDonald’s
in Austria and get 40 Thailand bahts more for each kilogram than
the normal price.
Forty bahts higher for each kilogram?
Have you used any chemical to prevent disease?
Not at all.
We use good management to prevent the disease. We are confident
that with good management, the disease should not occur.
Can you explain how to use microorganisms in shrimp ponds?
It is a long
story. There are many impacts on using the microorganisms. In Thailand,
it is very popular to use microorganisms in shrimp ponds now. From
my experience, to use microorganisms effectively, you need to have
sufficient dissolved oxygen in the pond. Also local microorganisms
are more effective than those that are imported because they are
native species to the tropical zone. The factors that affect the
use microorganisms are oxygen in the water, bottom soil condition,
and application rate. Those are the main factors that affect the
use of microorganisms.
How often do you use microorganisms in your farm?
Since our ponds are 17 years, they are quite old. We need to use
microorganisms to help improve the bottom soil and enhance the decomposition.
We use many aerators, both surface and bottom aeration, in order
to make sure that microorganisms can work very effectively. We use
microorganisms every 15 days during the rearing period.
Bacteria that cause the disease have already existed in
the nature and cannot harm the healthy shrimp, right?
cause the disease usually exist in living organisms, but it has
no impact to those organisms if they are healthy. This is true with
shrimp culture. If shrimp are healthy, any disease will not be harmful.
Some of our member ponds had problems with the disease but it only
occurred with one or two ponds or at most four or five ponds.
What is the stocking density in your farm compared to the
density in our group is 30-40 pieces/m2 or 50,000 to 70,000 pieces
per rai (2.5 rai = 1 acre). We will not stock higher densities than
this because it is easier for management.
Can you compare the stocking density with the other group?
the other group, we can manage easier, there is less disease problem,
and a faster growth rate. If you stock high density, the management
is more difficult, there is a huge amount of accumulated sludge,
and shrimp become stressed. So for us, we choose to stock lower
What is the stocking density for those who use a high stocking
It is around 80,000 to 100,000 pieces per rai.
There is no fixed formula for shrimp culture; the most important
is that the shrimp farmer has to be close with his cultured shrimp.
Please give more details on this?
There is no
formula to be successful with shrimp culture. The success depends
on the attention of the shrimp farmer himself. Most of the failures
have been with those who have not enough time spent with their cultured
Do you want to add anything?
I would like
to suggest that Thai shrimp farmers, or farmers in other countries,
follow COC (Code of Conducts) suggested by the Department of Fisheries,
Thailand. As our group and also other groups in Rayong have been
successful, I want to persuade all the shrimp farmers in Thailand
to consider and using COC of Department of Fisheries. You need not
follow every topic but at least you should not destroy the environment
and not use chemicals. I think COC should be the standard for sustainable
shrimp culture in Thailand.