Approaches for Sustainable Integrated Creative Southern Food Tourism Development in Surat Thani Province, Thailand

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Naphat Naksawat
Payom Dhamabutra

Abstract

            The purposes of this research were to 1) conduct the food tourism resources audit, 2) analyze the SWOR of southern creative tourism development, and 3) create the sustainable and integrated southern food tourism development concepts in Surat Thani, Thailand. Qualitative research was used in this research by using community education reports, tourism resource audit, and in-depth interviews.


            The results of the research were as follows: 1) Surat Thani province has many tourist attractions and food activities, including the coastal area of the Gulf of Thailand, Khao Sok National Park, food festivals, oyster festivals in Kanchanadit and OTOP market. It also provides accommodation and information services for both Thai and foreign tourists such as brochures, maps and route signs.


            2) The results of SWOT analysis are significant to determine the sustainable development of food tourism. Strength is that Surat Thani located in the middle of Southeast Asia which is the center of the world economy. Weakness is the food products have pesticide residues left. Also, the lack of cooperation between the agencies, lack of staffs and restaurants for food tourism. Opportunity is that the world population needs more food. Innovative technology allows opportunities to increase agricultural and food production efficiency. The threat is that competitors’ food exports have low production costs and labor costs.


            3) To present a creative southern food tourism development in Surat Thani, the use of food strengths merged with the community’s opportunity to define a proactive strategy, such as branding in tourism products and services. Bringing the community’s weakness merged with food tourism development opportunities in order to set guidelines for determining a knowledge base on southern food culture.

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