I love the street food in Bangkok- you should too. The Bangkok Post published some statistics about street food in Bangkok, highlights:
- Thb54.75 billion is total amount spent on street food annually
- 80% of Bangkokians eat street food more often than food from shophouses, department stores and restaurants
- Number of vendors: 20,275 that operate in permitted areas and another 17,731 operating illegally. The fine for operating illegally is Thb2,000, a low risk considering the amount someone call sell.
- Fees- Thb300 per square meter for monthly cleaning fee (permitted vendor)
- Fines- a fine of up to Thb20,000 can be levied (also jail time) for selling contaminated food.
- Favorite street foods- noodles, somtam, fried food; comment- good lesson in basic supply and demand as these three foods are both popular (demand) and easy to prepare on the street, this leads to most streets having vendors with these foods. For the fried foods, fried chicken would probably be most common followed by fried fish and pork.
Crowded sidewalks, smoke from cooking and rubbish are negatives of the street food scene. But street food fuels the masses- from office workers to laborers- and is a great look (and taste) at the Thai society.
Where there is a will- and one square meter- there will be a way to make some kind of food.