BKK Street Food Disappearing per BBC

Old Aug 23rd, 2016, 09:23 AM
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BKK Street Food Disappearing per BBC

Too bad
http://www.bbc.com/travel/story/2016...ng-street-food
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Old Aug 24th, 2016, 05:54 AM
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Such a shame. One of my favourite food haunts in the city. I blame rhkkmk
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Old Aug 24th, 2016, 07:01 AM
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I can't access the link as it's not available to UK viewers.

I get the picture though.

shame.
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Old Aug 24th, 2016, 07:49 AM
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That's awful. Some of the best flavors and taste thrills can be found on the streets of BKK.

Actually, we as tourists can get over it. But what's to become of those nice street food vendors?
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Old Aug 24th, 2016, 08:44 AM
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And the locals who find the street fare so affordable?

Will there be alternatives for them?

We were in Bangkok once though saw little in anything due to my wife needing to be hospitalized there for practically the entire week from some horrendous gi bug she contacted while were in India. We arrived with her being queasy and a day later she had to go in. All is fine now but I imagine there are many street sellers all over Bangkok so what dent will this make in the total?
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Old Aug 24th, 2016, 08:49 AM
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From the article it sounds like its a gradual elimination.
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Old Aug 24th, 2016, 06:33 PM
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Bangkok will start looking like Singapore if they take the street-food vendors away.

Happy Travels!
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Old Aug 24th, 2016, 08:00 PM
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Thailand has virtually no social security system, yet it is a rapidly industrialising society.

It has long been a tradition that those without a formal job earn a living from a Rot Ken business - i.e. a hand cart of some kind. to this extent they have always been "tolerated" on the street.

If the government really decides to push these businesses off the streets and doesn't provide an alternative viable location, it could severely impact of the welfare of the poorest in Thai society.

One can only assume that this in turn will make the government - local or national less popular.
I think it is something that in the long run any authority in Thailand will need to consider - to any action there is a reaction.
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Old Aug 24th, 2016, 11:10 PM
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Good posting Khunwilko.
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Old Aug 25th, 2016, 05:42 AM
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Good post indeed. It seems like this move is being made without much thought of consequences and the timing is so abrupt. Is this doomed to failure?
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Old Aug 25th, 2016, 06:27 AM
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A current thread on the subject on TA...

https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/ShowTo...d-Bangkok.html

...some interesting points.
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Old Aug 25th, 2016, 06:32 AM
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I understand that there are number of places where street food vendors have been moved to - rather like the hawker centers in Malaysia. This would be a good thing.

The BBC story strikes me as unnecessarily alarmist.
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Old Aug 25th, 2016, 07:07 AM
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Kathie that's good to hear as it seems there are plans in place other than a mass and forced removal.
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Old Aug 25th, 2016, 09:42 AM
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I asked a pal of mine who lives there. This is his reply.

"Re the street food. I am not aware of any new development on this. Most of the side walk cleanup started early last year as it had gotten out of control. Traffic, pedestrian as well as motor vehicle, was getting hindered by uncontrolled vendors who bribed metropolitan officials to set up their carts on public sidewalks. I recall reading about several shop owners around Sukhumvit road who had to resort to violence against city workers who “rented” out public sidewalks to vendors. Imagine if you legally own a shop house and a city workers rented out the sidewalk right outside of your store to unknown vendors. Your storefront cannot be seen by the customers and they will most likely go out of business. Or imagine if you own a house and right outside vendors claimed they have rights to sell food.

On one of the more famous street area, Sukhumvit Soi 38, the land owner wanted to develop his land and started evicting the vendors who had no rights to be there. Before the eviction, I believe the old owner had let them operate their stalls for years and most likely collected “rent” from these vendors as well.
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Old Aug 25th, 2016, 10:08 AM
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Ah, there are two sides to every story, then. Thanks for posting, jacketwatch.
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Old Aug 25th, 2016, 10:39 AM
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Jacketwatch, you info is correct as far as I understand from my friend in Bangkok. Let me be clear about what I was posting above. The hawker centers are not a development in response to this particular move out of food vendors on the streets, but has been a long term project in Bangkok (as has the moving of street vendors). The first of these new centers opened several years ago. The plan is to build more. For instance, some of the street vendors were moved into Asiatique, the (relatively new) shopping center on the river.

To the vendors, I'm sure this feels like a mass removal, as there are not places to move everyone to. But as you correctly pointed out, many of these vendors have been encroaching on private land for many years.

The good news about moving vendors into hawker centers is that it will dramatically cut down on food-borne illnesses. Malaysia saw a 96% decline in food-borne illnesses once they had moved vendors into hawker centers that had restrooms and running water.
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Old Aug 25th, 2016, 06:25 PM
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All true Kathie. It's a planned shift to hawker centers and for appropriate reasons not the least of which is improved sanitation. That should be reason enough. Will there be an appreciable improvement in traffic congestion? Time will tell I suppose.
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Old Aug 26th, 2016, 12:07 AM
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I avoid Sukhumvit and the bright light parts of Bangkok as much as I can.

Much less cluttering of the pavements in Banglamphu and Phra Athit areas
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Old Aug 26th, 2016, 04:45 AM
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IMHO the moving of these street food stalls into "hawker centres" just leads to the homogenisation of the street food culture, massive price inflation and a decline in the quality of food. Many just end up as food courts in basements of shopping centres serving barely average food. Asiatique

As for the assertion that Malaysia has seen a 96% decline in food-borne illnesses after moving vendors into centres sounds very much like government propaganda to justify their actions (and such a statistic would be impossible to measure anyway!)

As pointed out in Jacketwatch's post it must be awful for the shop owners whose businesses suffer as a result of illegal stalls setting up outside their premises and I can well imagine their anger at that and at the government officials who take bribes to allow it.

One of the main issues as I see it is that these stalls are run by people in the lower economic section of Thai society who have little as it is and whose very livelihood is being threatened at best and destroyed at worst.

PS LL - I agree with your re Sukumvit as far as the lower numbered sois are concerned but Soi 38 really is worth a visit.
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Old Aug 26th, 2016, 05:19 AM
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Good discussion. Hawker centers in Singapore are known for excellent food as evidenced by two stalls there receiving Michelin (1) stars recently and sanitary practices but how much of that is a result of their own culture of cleanliness and stringent govt. inspections to ensure this?

If Bangkok shifts to hawker centers will similar standards be in place or tainted by a culture of corruption?
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