Climate change and the more frequent occurrence of serious natural disasters has adversely affected the price of agricultural products, incomes, and livelihoods of Thai farmers. ThaiBev has been monitoring this problem and recognizes the importance of community and social development. The Group focuses on educating and training farmers, as well as encouraging communities to help conserve forest resources and prepare for natural disasters. ThaiBev has worked consistently for more than 15 years to strengthen communities with the “A Good Community with Smile” project. By collaborating with partner organizations to organize activities and projects, this project aims to improve the quality of life in targetted communities, while stimulating local economies and protecting natural resources and the environment. The project also creates learning opportunities for children and various disadvantaged groups.
ThaiBev Unites to Fight the Cold Project is entering its 20th year. The project started handing out warm blankets to vulnerable communities in 2000. This project has received cooperation from the Ministry of Interior, Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation, and provincial governors, who collect data on the number of people affected by cold weather in each province.
Every year, 200,000 green blankets are distributed in areas affected by cold temperatures in the north and northeast. To date, 4 million blankets have been delivered across 45 provinces in Thailand. ThaiBev gives employees and business partners the opportunity to buy additional blankets through the “1 share, 1 warm-up” program. In the past year, ThaiBev employees and business partners purchased 1,000 additional blankets for students affected by cold weather in Uthai Thani Province.
This project has been conducted for eight consecutive years. It creates opportunities for more than 3,500 young people in communities surrounding ThaiBev Group factories. The aim is to develop their knowledge and skills with expert teachers in three areas:
Trainers and speakers from ThaiBev Football Academy teach basic skills to local youth.
With help from the Sukree Charoensuk Foundation, musicians train selected students from various schools who have shown an interest in performing with bands and orchestras, so they can further develop their skills and earn an income through music in the future. Five students are able to enter the competition at the inter-campus level.
Children are taught how to make handicrafts and other products, such as herbal compress balls, woven bamboo, and painted Ban Chiang jars. Speakers from various communities are invited to inspire students to be creative, work hard, and generate income for themselves.
In order to help communities mange their water resources, ThaiBev has partnered with the Utokapat Foundation under Royal Patronage, implementing His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej The Great’s principle, “Think Macro, Do Micro.” It means that the whole country’s water management must be viewed as a macro system. There must be various water storage areas – large, medium, and small — that are linked. Because we cannot focus on all of them at the same time, we have to start with micro water management at the community level. Through education and collaboration, communities can own and support the application of science and technology. Communities will be able to manage water resources more efficiently, and fit water management practices to social conditions.
ThaiBev has worked with Nong Ping Kai village in Na Bo Kham Sub District, Mueang District, Kamphaeng Phet Province, to solve a water shortage problem that occurs during the dry season, and flooding during the rainy season. The community’s Tao Tai canal was restored and dredged, and 3,100-meter-long cement support structure was built to reduce water flow velocity during the flooding season. The community’s existing check dam was also improved to increase water storage and deliver water to agricultural areas with greater efficiency. The community has laid down rules for water usage and allocation. In total, the project affects 9,564 rai of agricultural land, with 588 households in four villages benefiting.
Deterioration of forests has occurred where some communities living on high mountains plant monocrops that need little water. Another challenge these communities face is the continuous use of large amounts of chemicals. ThaiBev has, in collaboration with the Huai Hong Khrai Royal Development Study Center, successfully applied the His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej The Great’s development model in Nan province to restore watershed forests and improve local people’s quality of life. Two villages have been chosen for the project: Srinapan village and Nam Poon village, with 217 villagers participating. The villagers were given professional training and input support, creating employment and income opportunities for local communities, enabling them to reduce expenses and increase income. The communities were also taken on a study visit to the Huai Hong Khrai Center in Chiang Mai Province. Sustainable practices were adapted to suit conditions in the area.
The project provides pigs, chickens, frogs, catfish, and tilapia to farmers to improve their quality of life. Participants are also encouraged to preserve the forest and environment by planting tree seedlings and building weirs to keep the soil hydrated. ThaiBev has closely monitored the progress of farmers and hopes that farmers in both villages, have food to eat or crops to sell to generate income of at least 3,000 baht per month on average.
This project promotes the policy of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment that requires the private sector to participate in the rehabilitation of watershed forests in deteriorated mountainous areas. The pilot projects are located in 13 provinces: Chiang Mai, Nan, Chiang Rai, Tak, Mae Hong Son, Phetchabun, Phitsanulok, Phayao, Phrae, Uttaradit, Lampang, Lamphun, and Loei. ThaiBev sponsored a project to restore watershed forests in Tak province at Sri Khirirak village, Chiang Thong Sub District, Wang Chao District. This is a small village with a population of 994 people, 189 households, and 157.38 rai of deteriorated forest.
Together with local communities, ThaiBev helps grow and care for tree seedlings, plant various economic crops gives educational training, and provides support for agriculture, livestock and fisheries. For example, mushroom cultures, chickens for eggs and meat, and tilapia-breeding skills for a student lunch program. The project also aims to reduce household expenses and promote livelihoods for the communities to be self reliant and sustainable, which in the next few years, green area would be expanded more than 50 rai.
ThaiBev supports the restoration of forest areas and biodiversity in a 17-rai plot of land at the Sirindhorn International Environmental Park in Phetchaburi province, under the Joining Forces for the Recovery of Nature in the Environment Project, in “Celebration of the Auspicious Occasion of Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn’s 5th Cycle Birthday Anniversary.” A budget of 2,978,400 baht was provided, as ThaiBev’s management team and volunteers joined to help with reforestation and mangrove rehabilitation, from 2015-2020.
In 2019, ThaiBev used drip irrigation systems and water spraying trucks to plant and water existing trees in a total area of 17 rai. Cow manure was added to these trees three times a year and the trees were cultivated to help increase their growth. The area is divided into two plots.
Since 2017, ThaiBev’s Community Development Program and Pracharath Rak Samakkhee Kanchanaburi (Social Enterprise) Limited has helped to establish the Khon Na Suan Community Enterprise Community, with 22 members under autonomous local management by the community. This project develops the community’s potential and economy through three working groups: agriculture, processing and community tourism.
Participants who are interested in organic farming, but do not have land or are afraid to make the change from chemical farming, are encouraged to collectively cultivate a six-rai plot. A portion of the profits were allocated for the group. Currently, there are five people participating. The project is in the cultivation phase; no produce has been harvested yet.
ThaiBev along with the Office of Small and Medium Enterprises Promotion (OSMEP), is collaborating with the community to upgrade standards for processing products made from local raw materials. ThaiBev provides product-processing knowledge, investment planning, packaging, and branding design to increase the value of fish, chili, and sesame products. Currently, there are ten OTOP registered processed products, with the name of the community and ThaiBev brands appearing on the product labels.
Management of certain areas in the community have been enhanced by focusing on preserving culture, tradition, and the environment. A homestay to accommodate tourists was upgraded. Currently, there are three houses serving as homestays that accommodate 20 people, including one house raft that can accommodate more than 50 tourists.