Everyone says it was disease but actually…….
The Thai government took away the guaranteed minimum price support to shrimp farmers – they had already got into trouble with rice – which featured heavily in Thai politics. This included the Thai government cold-store backstop shrimp strategy.
The Thai government took away the rebate on every reefer container exported. Initially this was to promote exports and investments into shrimp industry.
Shrimp farmers held back on stocking. Shrimp processors and exporters (whom didn’t really get involved in farming), with forward contracts to fill, started looking at importing and/or offshoring into other countries (SE Asia).
In country shrimp experts played the disease card – with vibrio convenient.
It was highlighted earlier on in 2010 to the Thai export industry in GOAL Kuala Lumpur, that Thai shrimp farmers had gained market share by playing a strategy of using unsustainable and non-certified local fishmeal. Things got worse later when news media delved in further and found slave trade involved. Then the chemicals and mangroves….
So since then economics seems to have hampered the Thai regrowth of shrimp farming –
BUT hope is that new technology has helped basically to reformat the strategy with RAS (albeit still exclusion rather than containment) systems being used.