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New strategy of Thai pork industry to upgrade

Thai pork producers are embarking on an initiative to upgrade the business involving improving poor sanitation and seeking access to export markets through foreign partners.

"80% of Thai pork production is substandard," according to Suphat Sritanatorn, senior marketing vice president of Charoen Pokphand Foods.

"Although the supervision of slaughterhouses was transferred five years ago to the Agriculture Ministry Livestock Department, many of the 40,000 or so pigs entering slaughterhouses daily are butchered under very poor standards."

Joint ventures
One key method to counteract these problems proposed by the industry is firstly, to set up operations abroad.

Charoen Rujiraspon, a major producer of Thai-style sausages and dried shredded pork, has joined with the Polish company Paruzel to produce a number of Khonkaen pork products to be exported in 16 markets within the EU, in Australia and New Zealand.

Another organisation CPF joined with is Japan's Yonekyu, to export fresh chilled meat products such as sausages and ham. What is interesting here is the fact that the meat is traceable by Japanese consumers. It is processed at farms and slaughterhouses which are certified by the Livestock Development Department.

Thai consumers should soon also be able to trace meat products through barcodes to be put on the packaging.

In addition, CPF is planning to air commercials early in 2008 to inform the public about checking for meat quality.

"Thai consumers were surprised by our commercials for promoting eggs and chicken a few years ago so why shouldn't we advertise the importance of quality pork?," stated Suphat.

Related website:
• Charoen Pokphand Foods

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