CPF expanding healthy foods
SET-listed Charoen Pokphand Foods Plc (CPF) wants to increase its range of healthy food products and produce more food for the infirm and the elderly, with the goal of expanding revenue for the food business by 10-12% to 130 billion baht in 2019.
Sukhawat Dansermsuk, CPF's chief executive for food business, said CPF has invested 1.35 billion baht in an R&D centre on 10 rai in Wang Noi district, Ayutthaya province. The company aims for the innovation centre to develop products that meet global trends.
"This centre will conduct many R&D activities for food and nutrition to add value to products and increase health and safety," said Mr Sukhawat, who is also CPF's co-president. "We aim to follow the global trends, focusing on high-quality and innovative foods."
The R&D centre was built in April 2017 and is certified by the Food and Drug Administration.
CPF expects healthy food to account for 30% of new products in 2019, and the R&D centre will deliver nutritional and safety foods to consumers worldwide.
In addition, CPF is studying the feasibility of innovative products to serve the elderly, hospitals and the military, which includes natural ingredients to restrain cancer cells, nano capsules to preserve foods, probiotic foods, and nano capsules with high-fibre microbes.
"Our R&D team is making progress on innovative products that have yet to be sold commercially," Mr Sukhawat said. "They will help CPF to improve food quality."
CPF operates in 16 countries, including China, the US, Britain, Malaysia and Russia. It exports many products from Thailand to over 30 countries, covering more than 4 billion people worldwide.
CPF has three business units: feed, farm and food.
The food business includes the manufacturing of semi-cooked and fully cooked meat, food products and ready-to-eat products, as well as meat and foods sold to retailers and restaurants.
Mr Sukhawat said CPF will launch new "smart" food and drink products in the first quarter of 2019, such as smart meals and soups; vegetarian food from high-fibre grains; tofu and vegetables; healthy soup from selected natural ingredients; tasty functional drinks; and organic juices.
CPF expects total revenue from the three business units to grow by 10% year-on-year in 2019.
CPF posted revenue over the first nine months of 2018 of 418.4 billion baht. Net profit for the period stood at 13.85 billion baht.
For the whole of 2018, CPF targets total revenue of more than 500 billion baht.
CPF shares closed yesterday on the Stock Exchange of Thailand at 27.25 baht, up 25 satang, in trade worth 337.8 million baht.