Demand for seafood as the more healthy source of proteins is rising around the world. Thailand's seafood export is also expanding. But fish stock and other seafood stock are rapidly dwindling in all seas and oceans around the world - due to over-fishing, microplastic poisoning, climate change, … all disruptions in food chains.
Thailand tries to protect its fish resource by restricting fishing activities in the Gulf of Thailand between February 15 and May 15 every year. This measure has worked somewhat in sustaining stock of some fish species. But in canned sardines, there are not only ‘sardine fish’ but also many small fish -including babies of big and more valuable fish species. This "The FAO/WHO Codex standard for canned sardines cites 21 species that may be classed as sardines. FishBase, a comprehensive database of information about fish, calls at least six species "pilchard", over a dozen just "sardine", and many more with the two basic names qualified by various adjectives." (credit data https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sardine ) makes it ‘legal’ to include baby fish (of many other kinds) in cans.
During March and May, it is not surprising that canned sardines - a product of Thailand - would disappear from shelves in supermarkets (in Australia and I think also in EU countries too). Thai sardines are packaged and sold in different supermarket brands around the world (in Australia, for supermarket chains like Aldi, Coles, Seaview, Trident and Woolworths).
It is now May and the Gulf is open for fishing again. The issue (in notes below) of killing baby fish and soon killing mother fish is again open. We do need to manage seafood resource better than just ปิดอ่าว. We need fish stock protection and fishing management to sustain seafood resource for small fishermen too and recreational fishing too.
What do we think if we are not allowed to grow and reach our full potential? Would our country not benefit more from our maturity? Can our society survive if our population is decimated before reaching re/productive age?
[Added a headline 3/7/2565: เรือประมงเฮ! วางอวนคืนเดียวจับปลาได้กว่า 10 ตัน หลังเปิดอ่าววันแรก https://www.thaipost.net/district-news/173297/ ]