Workshop “Redesigning BangNamPueng Market”

Workshop on “Redesigning Bangnampueng Mark
Promoting farmers’ markets as a bustling hub of sustainability  

Farmers markets can be a catalyzer for food system sustainability. Locally produced foods and farmers markets can enhance the sustainability outcomes of food systems across its three pillars (economic, social, and environmental)[1]. They can improve farm profits and thus their long-term viability, while boosting the local economy by drawing customers. They can increase community well-being, by providing access to healthy foods, particularly for low-income families.[2] But also by the nurturing of non-economic social ties. Further, locally produced food can achieve lower “food-print”, directly through lower transport distances (up to 27 times less mileage in the USA[3]) but also through better agricultural practices such as organic production, integrated pest management, reduced tillage or on-site composting. Additionally, farmers markets can also create awareness towards the social, environmental, and health benefits of growing and eating locally-produced food..

In Thailand, more and more consumers are drawn to farmers and local markets due to an increasing demand for natural, organic food and local products. According to WWF’s survey in 2017, consumers demand and prefer to pay more for markets that sell organic food and produce with clear origin labelling. This upward trend depicts a rising consciousness among consumers who are concerned with not just what they eat or consume, but how it has been produced and where. This “locally produced” market differentiation strategy results in higher value gains for farmers, while meeting the demand for healthier foods, which in turn can drive the adoption of environmentally sound farming practices. A sort of virtuous circle, the realization of which is not without challenges and, thus, opportunities.

This workshop will explore the challenges and related opportunities of the local farmer market model to catalyze sustainable food systems through the presentation of different tools, best practice cases, current intervention strategies, and lessons learned. The UN’s One Planet network Consumer Information Programme will introduce the new global guidance[4] for value chain professionals – of all sizes – on making effective environmental, social and economic claims, as a way to empower and enable more sustainable consumer choice. Central Group will share their “Green Marketplace” and lessons learned throughout its deployment. Sustainable Food Lab Thailand will share insights on the Sookjai farmer’s market and how tourism can advance sustainable food systems.  Participants will then be “walked through” the market by Suthasinee Chaikuenkun, Bangnumpueng SAO, to explore its gaps, challenges and opportunities, which will lead participants into workshop mode to brainstorm in different break out groups to repsond the question: “how can we improve farmers’ markets so they become a bustling hub of sustainability?”

Bangnampueng market:
Located on the Bangkachao peninsula of Samut Prakan, or what is commonly known as Bangkok’s green lungs, Bangnampueng market boasts itself as one of the capital’s key cultural tourism destination following the established conservation effort between the local community and the sub-district’s administrative organization. The site was established as a local market to promote locally produced food and products as a form of sustenance for the livelihood and well-being of the community. To date, the local market oversees more than an average of 8,000 visitors per day. Significant successes have also been sighted within the market’s socio-economic development aspect and its sustenance of the community’s local food system, where the green hub’s sustainable practice is showcased as the local market model throughout the country.

However, its abrupt growth and success has also brought about some key issues along the trade-offs between effective environmental management , the establishment of a marketplace that maximizes benefits for the local communities, and engagement with consumers in contributing towards sustainability and eco-tourism through their choice of consumption.

 Redesigning Bangnampueng market workshop:
The workshop aims to promote knowledge exchange on sustainable consumption and production in food systems (with a focus on farmers markets) with regard to the context of local community development, consumer information, eco-tourism and environmental conservation. Through a collective effort, participants are given an opportunity to share their knowledge and expertise through the exemplification of different case studies, including Bangnampueng Market. Together, participants are invited to identify key taking points in promoting the development of local market models as a bustling hub of sustainability.

The workshop will also provide an opportunity for participating companies beyond the workshop to join a free training programme that includes a self-assessment exercise and an introduction to supply chain hotspot identification tools, and which also provides the possibility of crafting a case study to be added to an ongoing “library” of company cases developed by the Consumer Information Programme of the UN One Planet Network – the multi-stakeholder partnership platform that is the implementation vehicle of SDG12 on Sustainable Consumption and Production (10YFP).

Workshop agenda: 12th Oct 2018; 1.30 pm- 4.00 pm

(5 mins) Welcome and introduction:
Ply Pirom, WWF Thailand

(40 mins) Guidelines for providing product sustainability information, and their implementation in local markets:
Beatriz Martins Carneiro, UN Environment

(20 mins) Green marketplace; sharing of experiences and lessons learned from Central Group:
Oranuch Jiyachan, TOPS Supermarket
Preyawat Puketkew, Family Mart

(20 mins)  Advancing sustainable food system by organic tourism; lessons learned from Sookjai farmer’s market:
Dr. Udom Hongchatikul, Sustainable Food Lab Thailand

(20 mins) Bangnampueng Market Walk-Through; Identification of successes, gaps, challenges and opportunities:
Suthasinee Chaikuenkun, Bangnampueng SAO

(10) Framework for the workshop “Promoting farmers’ markets as a bustling hub of sustainability
Praewpon Sukutsathian, Jaibaan Studio

(20 mins) Breakout groups: Brainstorming session

(15 mins) Report back

(10 mins) Wrap up and closing of workshop
Ply Pirom, WWF Thailand


Organizing partners and speakers are comprised of relevant multi-sector organizations: UN Environment, WWF Thailand, Central Group, Bangnampueng SAO, Sustainable Food Labs Thailand and Jaibaan Studio.

[1]Conner et al. 2010. Locally Grown Foods and Farmers Markets: Consumer Attitudes and Behaviors. Sustainability 2010, 2(3), 742-756; doi:10.3390/su2030742

[2] Project for Public Spaces and Columbia University, Farmers Markets as a Strategy to Improve Access to Healthy Food for Low-Income Families and Communities

[3] Triple Pundit, May 19, 2016. Farmers Markets: A Sustainable Commerce Revolution?