In a seminar titled “Pre Top Form: The Future Economic Plant”, organized by the Village Technology Online on September 27, there was significant interest from farmers and the general public. The seminar featured a special lecture by Mr. Chanthanant Wannakejorn, Secretary-General of the Office of Agricultural Economics, on the topic of “Monitoring the Future Economic Plant and Creating Sustainable Income”. He highlighted that in 2022, Thailand’s agricultural sector was valued at 1.53 trillion baht, accounting for just 8.81% of the country’s total economy.
Agriculture plays a pivotal role in driving the nation, with key crops like bamboo, soybeans, cocoa, cannabis, and herbs, especially medicinal herbs including cannabis, in high demand. The global market for these herbs is valued at over 370 billion baht annually, spanning food, beauty, and medical sectors with diverse value-added innovations.
Mr. Thawatch Jirungpiriwong, Chairman of the Thai Herb Centers, emphasized the state’s support for medical cannabis to develop products and market value seriously. He pointed out that many Asian countries, including Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau, Japan, and South Korea, are promoting the cultivation of medical cannabis to meet international standards. The Thai Herb Centers, with their expertise in cannabis as a medicinal treatment for diseases like cancer, aim to support, promote, and develop Thai medical cannabis cultivation to meet these standards, emphasizing the need for clear legislation.
Many countries have policies allowing access to legal cannabis, with some permitting only medical use. Thailand is leaning towards medical cannabis, which Mr. Thawatch strongly supports. He mentioned that the private sector has made significant progress, and he hopes the government will expedite the legalization and support of medical cannabis to further boost its economic potential.