Vietnam gobbles more imported pig feed as pork demand rises
New feed mills are being built by foreign companies including commodity giant Cargill, Inc. and domestic conglomerates such as steelmaker Hoa Phat Group JSC, all hoping to profit as meat becomes a bigger part of daily diets. Per-capita consumption of pork has more than doubled since 2000 and will be the most of any country in the next seven years, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) estimates.
With local farmers unable to grow enough animal feed, imports of meal next year will be twice what they were in 2012, US Department of Agriculture (USDA) data show. A global crop surplus over the past few years has kept prices low, and rising incomes in Vietnam’s export-led economy mean people have more money to spend on meats and proteins in traditional dishes like bun cha, a meal of grilled pork and noodles.
“Although the animal-feed industry does not have high margins and competition is fierce, the scale is huge and there’s a lot of potential,” Tran Tuan Duong, the general director at Hoa Phat, said by e-mail. The company, which also has investments in construction, furniture, refrigeration and real estate, has started operations at its first feed mill and will open another one early next year.
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