Oil spill or no, there’s only so long Thais can go without fresh seafood and sales of it have returned to normal at Rayong’s Phae beach area.
For weeks following the July 27 oil spill that blackened Koh Samet beaches and incited fears of that petroleum and dispersed chemicals had tainted marine life, sales of crab, shrimp and other seafood had dried up.
But after Gov. Wichit Chatpaisit hosted a “Clean & Safe Seafood” rally Aug. 31, sales have returned to normal.
Seafood sales in Rayong are now so brisk, people have to line up to buy crab before it’s sold out.
The governor, joined by executives from PTT Global Chemical, which was responsible for the spill, and Rayong police watched at the rally as a famous chef and noted seafood critic Santi Sawetwimol went to Phae Beach to cook up and sample roasted octopus, grilled crab and broiled lobster. Free samples and cash prizes were handed out to audience members.
Wichit said sales roared back so quickly that in early September Thai tourists discovered area hotels had taken all the crab. Needless to say, crab fishermen were delighted with the demand.
Crab vendors said prices are running 200-250 baht for crabs, while egg crabs can be had for 300 baht.