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Thai Union profits soar in third quarter

Net sales for global seafood processor Thai Union for the third quarter rose 9.3% to THB 34.78 billion year-on-year, while net profit surged 49.7% to THB 2.06 billion.

A company statement said: “Consumers across the world continued to put their trust in Thai Union’s healthy and nutritious products for both them and their pets, the company’s third quarter results to end-September 2020 show.

“Many people have also changed some of their habits as a result of the global COVID-19 pandemic this year, including eating healthier and cooking more at home. This trend continued in the third quarter of the year through ongoing strong purchases of long-shelf life and pet food products – a consequence of people adopting more pets and spending more time at home with their family, cats and dogs.”

The company’s ambient seafood business was a strong contributor to 3Q20 sales, coming in 12.4% higher at THB 16.26 billion, with frozen food and related business sales rising 4.7% to THB 13.37 billion, and PetCare and value-added business up 12% at THB 5.15 billion.

“These strong results reflect our strategies to improve business efficiency and productivity as well as changing consumer demand because of the global pandemic,” said Thiraphong Chansiri, Thai Union’s CEO.

“Over the past few years, we have been investing in improving our core business and high-margined businesses including ingredients and food-tech innovations. While Covid-19 is still a challenge to all businesses, we continue to work hard to ensure we can continue delivering quality products to our customers around the world. I am pleased that people continue to have such great trust in our brands.”

As a leader in the food industry, Thai Union has continued its focus on turning innovation into action, including joining hands over the quarter with four new food-tech startups from the SPACE-F program which Thai Union co-founded in 2019.

“Our vision is to help build an ecosystem that is based on innovative new technologies. Thai Union has already piloted its plant-based seafood products in Thai markets, in response to the increasing consumers demand for more sustainable, lower environmental impacted protein,” Chansiri said.

Three of the startups, Manna Foods, Alchemy Foodtech and HydroNeo, focus on alternative protein, functional food and high technologies for aquaculture farming respectively. Singapore-based Agritech, the fourth startup, is funding VisVires New Protein.

While this market is still in the growth phase in Thailand, it has huge potential as the global market for alternative protein is estimated at US $12.8 billion and expected to expand at a CAGR of 6.8% between 2019-2025.

Thai Union’s forward-looking vision and innovation was also recognized over the quarter, including seeing Chansiri ranked as the most influential executive in the seafood industry by Intrafish; the SDG Impact Award for its global initiatives to deliver against UN SDGs and industry-leading standards at the Responsible Business Awards 2020 in the UK, and by the FTSE4Good Emerging Index for the fifth consecutive year.

“Our key focus areas remain preserving cash, capturing opportunities and managing daily operations, with health and safety our number one priority. We continue to work hard to ensure business continuity and maintain production capacity in order to continue delivering the safe and quality products that consumers around the world know and trust,” Chansiri said.

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