The Tourism Authority of Thailand Sydney Office (TAT) would like to assure travellers that Bangkok remains one of the world’s top destinations for street food. This is in light of recent media articles stating that the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) is to ban food stalls from Bangkok’s main streets. Rest assured, this is not the case!
TAT has contacted the BMA and found that while there are measures in place to control food vendors and enforce current regulations, there is no ban on the sale of street food. In fact, the BMA appreciates that food vendors are a vital part of the city’s identity and helped Bangkok be listed by CNN as one of the 23 best cities in the world for street food.
BMA has said that it will be providing support and advice to the city’s street food vendors to help them raise hygiene standards, improve food safety and adhere to proper waste management procedures.
To ensure the safety and convenience of all road users and pedestrians, BMA is also enforcing measures regarding sidewalk and road obstructions and is working with the Metropolitan Police Bureau and its Traffic Division, to see that vital walkways are clear of the food carts, chairs and umbrellas used by many street food vendors in the city.
This means that in Bangkok’s busiest areas, vendors have been required to move to designated zones and nearby markets to operate.
Popular tourist streets such as Chinatown’s Yaowaraj and Khao San Road, will not be affected. But these areas will receive special attention to ensure international hygienic standards are met by the vendors.
To this end and pending government approval, the BMA intends to implement the following measures:
- To introduce universal hygienic standard practice for food preparation and service and strictly enforce these measures.
- To ensure food vendors attend BMA training programs on food safety and pass tests before they are licenced.
- To enforce measures regarding waste management and the cleaning of bowls and utensils used by customers.