Thailand’s Ministry of Labour and CP Foods join hands to commit internationally accepted labour standard in aquaculture business

Department of Labour Protection and Welfare, Ministry of Labour, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on “Thai labour standards development for sustainable aquaculture” with Charoen Pokphand Foods Public Company Limited (CP Foods) to continuously promote Thai Labour Standard: TLS 8001 in the shrimp production chain. The agreement will ensure the quality of life of workers in aquaculture business and reassured consumers and other stakeholders that the workers are being treated with internationally accepted Human Rights standards.

Within this year, over 200 aquaculture operations of CP Foods in Thailand will be certified the TLS 8001, which is the operational guidelines for the companies to provide appropriate protection for the workers by setting related policy for the effective implementation.

TLS8001 is mainly focused on promoting good life quality of the workers, eliminating every kind of force labour and discrimination and, ultimately, strengthening sustainable growth of the business. Moreover, it is written within scope of the Constitution of the Kingdom of Thailand, provisions of the labour laws concerning labour protection, occupational safety, health and environment, labour welfare, and labour relations. Moreover, related guidance of the International Labour Organization (ILO) and of the United Nations are also brought into account.

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Secretariat to the Labour Minister Suthep Chitayawong, said the government has a policy to support Thai private sector to raise labour standards to the internationally recognized level. The agreement is a prove of commitment between the Department of Labor Protection and Welfare and CP Foods, a leading food producer in Thailand, to drives the Thai business sector toward international labour standards and provide workers with a better quality of life.

“CP Foods has always supported the government’s policy on labour management. This cooperation will build a good image, helping Thai shrimp industry to be recognized by customers all over the world in terms of ethical and responsible labour practices,” said Mr. Suthep.

Director-general Niyom Songkaew said the department has a policy to encourage business sector to adhere to a social responsibility for the labour of the business. As a result, the department has established the standard as guidelines for all kinds and all sizes of the business operators to treat voluntarily with the workers to improve and develop good practices on labour management system, in compliance with the international labour standards.

He added that the MoU with CP Foods’ shrimp business will enable the company’s work practices and procedure to meet the requirements of Thai labour standards as well as internationally accepted standard, boosting its competitiveness on the world stage.

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CP Foods’ CEO Prasit Boondoungprasert, mentioned that the company has placed great importance to fair treatment toward workers and develop a good labour  management system that is on par with international labor standards. Subsequently, CP Foods targets that all of its over 200 shrimp farms and factories across the country to be certified for the labour standards by 2022, leading to better quality of life of workers. and working conditions in accordance the organization’s CPF 2030 Sustainability in Action strategy.

Since 2017, the company has been working with the Labour Protection Network Foundation (LPN) to set up Labour Voices Hotline By LPN to provide consulting service for Migrant workers and reassure that all voices in the company’s supply chain are being heard. LPN and CP Foods also work together to raise awareness on Human Rights as well as Occupational Health and Safety among workers.

Aside this agreement, CP Foods has made proactive efforts to eliminate labour issues and improve working conditions and well-being. As a result, CP Foods has won multiple labour-related awards, including Thailand Labour Management Excellence Award 2021, HR Asia’s Gold Class from Asia Sustainability Reporting Awards (ASRA) and inclusion in (Dow Jones Sustainability Indices for 7 consecutive years.