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Shrimp farmers dispute Wal-Mart

THAILAND - Associations in the Thai shrimp industry should join with government agencies to take action against the misleading information, says Bunjonk Nissapawanich, president of the Thai Eastern Shrimp Farmers' Association.

He said it was vitally important to provide facts and correct recent misconceptions.

The concern follows a news report in The Wall Street Journal's Asian edition on July 25 headlined "The New Wal-Mart Effect: Cleaner Thai Shrimp Farms".

The article said Rubicon Resources, a Los Angeles-based supplier of farmed shrimp to Wal-Mart, had bought and upgraded roughly 150 small shrimp farms in Thailand out of concern for environmental and social standards.

The article, without attribution, also said 80 per cent of small independent Thai shrimp farms "lack the resources to make necessary upgrades or balk at the certification fees as costs they likely won't recover. That could widen the gap between the haves and have-nots in Thai shrimp farming and world aquaculture as a whole".

Source: The Nation