Food firms focus on regional market

Staff writer, with CNA

Tue, Nov 11, 2014 - Page 14

Nearly 50 Taiwanese companies, including some food makers, are participating in an investment fair in the Thai capital in a bid to break into Southeast Asian markets after a spate of tainted oil scandals at home.

The event, organized by the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA), has drawn more visitors and buyers than expected, TAITRA’s market development department deputy director Hou Wen-chin (侯文欽) said yesterday.

Taiwan Representative to Thailand Henry Chen (陳銘政) said in an address at the opening that Taiwanese businesses should grab the opportunity to gain footholds in Thailand before edging into other markets in the region, where an ASEAN economic community is set to be be established by the end of next year.

Although Thailand is currently under martial law, the public’s daily lives have not been affected, Chen said, adding that quality Taiwan-made products would undoubtedly do well in the regional market.

General manager of Taichung-based Wanyi (萬益) food company Chen Chun-yi (陳君儀) said she is not familiar with Southeast Asian markets, but hopes to test the water during the trade show.

Among the products on display by her company, the beef products were the least popular, she said, adding that vegetarian foods, such as bean curd and Konjac foods were popular.