November 18, 2003



Thailand Poultry Producer To Expand Poultry Biz & Build New Feed Plant

In line with the bullish outlook for chicken exports next year, major Thai producer GFPT Plc is preparing to invest at least one billion baht to expand its poultry business.

The expansion, to be completed over two years, includes a 500-million-baht investment to increase capacity of its processing plant to 200,000 chickens a day, up from the present 130,000. That would raise chicken meat production to more than 100,000 tons per year, compared with about 68,000 tons at present.

Another 300-350 million baht will be invested in a new animal feed production plant in Samut Prakan to double feed output to 100 tons an hour when the plant is completed in 2005.

Anan Sirimongkolkasem, chairman of the executive board, said the investments would help the group achieve its target for 7% growth in sales next year, from an estimated eight billion baht this year.

The GFPT Group comprises six companies in the poultry business including Krungthai Feedmill and McKey Food Services (Thailand) Co.

The substantial increase in Thai chicken exports this year to 550,000 tons, from 465,000 tons in 2002, has drawn chicken producers to raise capacity. Market leader Saha Farms Group earlier announced an investment of 10 billion baht to double chicken meat production to 200,000 tons a year.

Mr Anan, also the president of the Thai Broiler Processing Exporters Association, said exports next year should rise significantly to at least 600,000 tons as demand from key markets, Japan and the European Union, remains high.

He said domestic sales, which contribute about 75% of the company's revenue, also had a brighter outlook, as did supplies of processed meat such as chicken nuggets for McDonald's restaurants overseas.

He said that subsidiary McKey Food Services (Thailand), a joint venture of GFPT and Keystone Foods Corporation (USA), would soon begin to export products to McDonald's in Japan and Korea, adding to present markets in Singapore and Hong Kong. More processing joint ventures with Japanese partners were being negotiated.

The company yesterday opened its new office building on Rama II Road in Bangkok.

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