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CPF: New Investment in Grain Terminal

by 5m Editor
22 July 2008, at 9:38am

THAILAND - Charoen Pokphand Foods Plc (CPF) plans to develop its animal feed operation in Nakhon Ratchasima as a grain terminal in order to benefit from plentiful maize production in the north-eastern provinces.

This development would double storage capacity of maize to 200,000 tonnes from the region, one of the best areas to grow the crop with more than 800,000 tonnes produced a year, according to Virote Kumpeera, a CPF senior vice-president and reported in Bangkok Post.

The grain will be dried promptly to assure quality and delivered to one of the company's 11 animal-feed plants that spread into the central provinces, which normally takes several hours to transport, he said.

The newspaper reports that CPF needs a large amount of maize, soybean meal and rice husks as key ingredients for more than six million tonnes of livestock feed and four million tonnes of aqua feed.

According to Mr Virote, the company needs to devote an additional 500 million baht to facilitate development of the grain terminal project. The new investment includes adding more dryers to process as many as 4,000 tonnes of maize per day and building new silos to keep 200,000 tonnes of dried maize.

The terminal project will be added in the 200,000 square-metre compound of CPF in Pak Thong Chai, a district in Nakhon Ratchasima. However, continued expensive maize prices could be a major impediment, Mr Virote said.

He said maize prices had been rising sharply recently, from 9-10 baht a kilogramme last month to 11 baht this past week, following the US market where export prices sold to Asian countries have escalated to 14 baht.

He expected that prices for new crops - due to be harvested next month - will remain high.

In contrast, current declining meat prices would decrease the new round of livestock farming and affect the animal feed industry in the end, Mr Virote predicted.

View the Bangkok Post story by clicking here.

5m Editor