November 29, 2008


Betagro opens new factory in northern Thailand


Thai agro-industrial company, Betagro Group, has opened a THB370 million (US$10.4 million) animal feed manufacturing facility in the northern Lamphun province in order to expand production nationwide.


The new feed plant has an output capacity of 18,000 tonnes per month, and is one of the largest production facilities in the northern region of Thailand, according to Betagro Group's chief executive Vanus Taepaisitphongse.


The new facility expands the group's total feed output to 1.9 million tonnes per year, which could help to meet growing demand in the region, said Narongchai Srisantisaeng, senior vice-president for regional and feed business.


Narongchai said the new plant will also allow the company to improve its logistic operations for animal feed from processing plants to farmers across the region,


The facility is able to supply about 14,000 tonnes of livestock feed per month to farmers in the northern region, Narongchai said.


The increased production is expected to help boost Betagro's market share in the upper northern region's feed market to 37 percent in 2009 from the estimated 23 percent this year.


Betagro estimates its livestock and feed businesses to generate over THB 40 billion (US$1.1 billion) in revenue by end of 2008.


Betagro said total feed demand in Thailand this year is expected to reach 11.3 million tonnes, and the recent input costs reduction from lower use of raw materials such as corn, soymeal and fishmeal would improve the feed business by about 7 percent to 12 million tonnes next year.


Narongchai said the strong feed market had driven the company's new plan to build a new facility in the western or southern region in the coming months.

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