Charoen Pokphand (CP) Group, Thailand’s largest agribusiness group, has launched a joint venture with Japanese and Australian partners to develop Thai mango exports to the two countries, reports the Bangkok Post.
The joint venture, CP Starlanes, plans to export 350 tonnes of mangoes to Japan this year, up from 150 tonnes in 2008, after CP Group’s Japanese partner helped explore sales channels such as the convenience store chain 7-Eleven, the paper said.
Japan currently consumes an estimated 12,000 tonnes of mangoes a year, mainly from Mexico and the Philippines, according to the report.
CP also plans to double mango production to 3,400 tonnes by increasing production of Australian-developed variety R2E2, as well as Maha Choke and Nam Doc Mai varieties to tap into the higher demand abroad, the paper said.
"We will lower the production of the local favourites - Kiew Savoey and Rad - which are grown largely by small planters," Montri Congtrakultien, chief executive and president of Crop Integration Business, part of the CP Group, told the Bangkok Post.
CP Group’s mango exports will rise to 2,000 tonnes next year thanks to new markets such as Russia and the Middle East opening up, and demand from existing markets - Japan, Hong Kong, and China – increasing, he said.
A new storage facility to preserve fruit quality during sea transport will help cut shipment costs by 50-65 per cent and increase the competitiveness of the fruit in foreign markets, Mr Congtrakultien added.
He forecast income from CP Group’s mango orchards would double to 500m baht next year from this year's levels.