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Government set to ban trans fats

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Government set to ban trans fats | The Thaiger
The Public Health Ministry is poised to ban the production, import and distribution of food containing trans fat.

Trans fat, also called trans-unsaturated fatty acids or trans fatty acids, are a type of unsaturated fat that occur in small amounts in nature but became widely produced industrially from vegetable fats starting in the 1950s for use in margarine, snack food, and packaged baked goods and for frying fast food. Trans fat has been shown to consistently be associated, in an intake-dependent way, with increased risk of coronary artery disease, a leading cause of death in Western nations. – Wikipedia

The order which was issued on June 13 and will become effective 180 days after its publication in the Royal Gazette cites scientific evidence that trans fatty acids from partially hydrogenated oils will increase the risk of heart diseases and stroke.  It is also associated with a higher risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes.

Common foods which contain trans fats include cakes, pies and cookies, margarine, crackers, microwave popcorn, cream-filled candies, doughnuts, breakfast sandwiches, fried fast foods, frozen pizza.

It is not known when the ministerial order will be published in the Royal Gazette.



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Krabi

First Kunming-Krabi direct flight landed

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First Kunming-Krabi direct flight landed | The Thaiger

The first direct flight from Kunming, China, full of Chinese passengers, has arrived at Krabi International Airport.

The General Manager of the Krabi International Airport Apichai Aranyik has welcomed the new Lucky Airline (Boeing 737) with its first direct Charter Flight from Kunming to Krabi. The flight carried 162 passengers and arrived in Krabi at 7pm last night (Sunday).

Khun Apichai says, “In the past five year since the movie ‘Lost in Thailand’ Chinese tourists becoming the top tourists visiting Krabi. At the start they were coming in tour groups.”

“After the boat disaster in Phuket in July, Chinese tourists weren’t coming to Krabi either. This first direct flight is a good sign to welcome the next wave of Chinese tourists.”

The Deputy Director of the Phuket Tourism Authority of Thailand, Montri Manator, says, “Numbers of Chinese tourists visiting Phuket in tour groups have been continuing to decrease after the Phoenix sinking on July 5 this year. But we are seeing a steady rise in the FIT (Free and Independent Travellers) from China”

Read more about the changes in Chinese tourism to Phuket HERE.

First Kunming-Krabi direct flight landed | News by The Thaiger First Kunming-Krabi direct flight landed | News by The Thaiger First Kunming-Krabi direct flight landed | News by The Thaiger

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Chiang Mai

The new visa-fee waiver working in the north

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The new visa-fee waiver working in the north | The Thaiger

According to the National News Bureau of Thailand, the new visa-fee waiver is working. Well, in the northern provinces anyway.

The northern provinces are reporting an increase in the number of foreign visitors, thanks to the government’s free visa on arrival campaign.

Wiwat Piyawiroj , Executive Vice President of Commercial at Thai Airways, says the free visa on arrival scheme for 21 nationalities has boosted the number of foreign visitors in Thailand’s north, particularly in the tourist cities of Chiang Rai and Chiang Mai.

He notes that more Thai Airways flights have been booked by Chinese passport holders as many of them will be celebrating the Loi Krathong Festival and the western New Year in Thailand.

Another contributor to the increase in the number of foreign visitors is the secondary destination campaign which offers tour packages to lesser-known attractions, according to Wiwat.

He added that Thai Airways is conducting a feasibility study on its return to the US market with a possibility of adding direct flights to American cities, following a report that the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is planning to upgrade the Thai aviation sector to Category 1.

Thailand was downgraded to Category 2 in 2015 because of its failure to comply with international safety standards. The downgrade prohibited Thai carriers from adding new routes or expanding existing services to the world’s top aviation markets such as to the US.

SOURCE: National News Bureau of Thailand

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Thai Life

ALERT: Amoxicillin use in Thai orange orchards

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ALERT: Amoxicillin use in Thai orange orchards | The Thaiger

The Thai Public Health Ministry is checking on pharmacies and antibiotics manufacturers that may have distributed amoxicillin (an antibiotic) for farms – reportedly used widely in northern and central orange orchards – as it could lead to drug resistance or even fatal allergies in humans as well as contaminating the environment.

Amoxicillin is an antibiotic often used for the treatment of a number of bacterial infections. It may be used for middle ear infection, strep throat, pneumonia, skin infections, and urinary tract infections among others. It is taken by mouth, or less commonly by injection – Wikipedia

A recent report highlighted the apparent long-standing use of amoxicillin injection into orange trees three to four times a year, to treat Citrus greening disease – caused by a bacteria spread by psyllid insects – and said that orange farmers did not realise the danger of the practice. The Ministry’s permanent secretary Dr Sukhum Kanchanapimai says that the abuse must be stopped.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Department of Medical Sciences, along with respective health offices have begun to investigate in the jurisdictions involved.

FDA deputy secretary-general Dr Surachoke Tangwiwat said his agency had required respective provincial health offices to check on orange orchards for the distribution of amoxicillin to orange farmers and ensure that the sale of antibiotics is made only at pharmacies with pharmacists.

The agency also warned antibiotics manufacturers to distribute antibiotics to pharmacies and not directly to farmers or they will face legal actions.

Pharmacist Supanai Prasertsuk, coordinator for the pharmacists’ follow-up group for borderland medicine issues under the Drug System Monitoring and Development Centre, said his members had identified the issue of antibiotic use in fruit and vegetable farming in the North.

This misuse of amoxicillin – which is among the most-used antibiotics to treat infections in humans and must be prescribed by pharmacists – can lead to environmental contamination, especially at water sources.

The consumers’ secondary exposure to such medicine can lead to serious or even fatal reactions among those allergic to antibiotics, and the farmers’ direct exposure to such medicine that can lead to allergic reactions, Supanai said.

He said that farms would most likely not use antibiotic capsules but a chemical powder format, which can cause it to scatter. Although there was no research to confirm antibiotic contamination from the use in orange orchards, he said the sensible precaution was to stop such use.

The Public Health Ministry should check farmers’ physical conditions as well as samples from soil and water to study for a contamination, while farmers should shift to organic farming guidelines, Supanai said.

Supanai also urged the authority to check on the sale of chemicals (used in making amoxicillin) to farmers as such substances were also considered dangerous medicines. The sale of the drug by non-pharmacists violated the law so the sellers and manufacturers could be held accountable.

Supanai advised those allergic to amoxicillin to avoid consumption while those without allergies should refrain from consuming a large amount and to leave a seven-day gap between consumption.

SOURCE: The Nation

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