The economic model of Thailand 4.0 is considered a new concept for converting the “production-based economy”, which has long been implemented from the past until 2016, into
“value-based or value-driven economy” through an adoption of science technology and innovation (STI),
research and development (R&D), and reformation on education, human resources, and labor forces at the same time.
With the purpose for driving a new wave of economy concretely, the Cabinet therefore approved of the proposal submitted by the Ministry of Industry regarding “10 Targeted Industries: Mechanism for Driving the Future Economy”, consisting of 5 First S-curve and 5 New S-curve under the investment promotion and tax privileges, on 17th November 2015. Among the 5 First S-curve industries, two areas of agro and food industries are included. These are “Agro-industry and Biotechnology” and “Food-processing Industry”.
Thailand Center of Excellence in Physics (ThEP Center) has realized the importance of these two targeted industries because food not only is one of four necessities for human beings but also reflects the background of Thailand as an agricultural country since the ancient times. In fact, Thailand has its favorable climate, folk wisdoms, and cultures associated with the agricultural cultivation which is formed into its national identities. That is to say, this industry is blessed with the competitive advantage of Thailand’s existing “nature” and “cultures”.
Even though Thailand is known as the largest agricultural production-base in ASEAN, the country’s agricultural forces, approximately 14.5 million people, are still the low-income groups with the problem of financial debt and still practice the traditional agriculture or the nature-based agriculture. It is necessary to enhance them with STI incorporating Thailand 4.0 Model. Accordingly, Thailand Center of Excellence in Physics allocated the 2016 annual budget totaling 16,304,000 Baht (about US$ 456,512) with the support of Office of the Higher Education Commission (OHEC), Ministry of Education, to launch the research program of “Innovative Physics for Enhancing Value of Agricultural Products”. It is expected to integrate the knowledge and expertise of researchers from allied universities in several regions of the country to increase revenues and reduce expenses among farmers by enhancing their productivity, upgrading the quality of their mainstream products, and promoting the product processing through innovative techniques created by Thai people. This research program lasts from 1st October 2016 – 30th September 2019, involving 6 research projects targeted at strengthening Thai farmers sustainably with the outcomes in the short term, medium term, and long term. Each research project contains the following essence below. (Please click within each ellipse)