Food group expands into ready-to-eat products

Food group expands into ready-to-eat products

Ms Sudatip promotes the company’s new multigrain oatmeal product.

Pataya Food Group, the producer and marketer of Nautilus canned fish, has diversified its business to ready-to-eat products as a part of an effort to boost the group’s sales to 10 billion baht over the next three years.

Sudatip Kiatsrichart, the group’s executive director, said starting from this year the company will gear toward expansion in the health food market which is worth more than 100 billion baht.

The company recently entered Thailand’s ready-to-eat cereal market by launching Nautilus Xten healthy meals to tap into a growing market of health-conscious consumers both in Thailand and abroad, with a particular focus on China, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam.

Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia are also in the company’s business pipeline.

“We’ve entered the ready-to-eat meal market because it contains a few of our direct competitors. Multigrain oatmeal is also a rising trend and we want Nautilus to be more than canned fish,” Ms Sudatip said.

Despite the demand for some foods and beverages declining during the pandemic, Ms Sudatip said demand for ready-to-eat cereal in Thailand grew by 3-5% over the last few years.

“The company aims to sell 10 million cups of Nautilus Xten ready-to-eat [meal] within the next three years. There are four Nautilus Xten products available in the market with a price range set at 35-45 baht per cup,” she said.

The company is also aiming for the new ready-to-eat cereal products to be instrumental in boosting the group’s total sales to reach 10 billion baht over the next three years, up from 8 billion baht in 2020, raising the proportion of sales of its own products to 25% of total sales during the period from 20% last year.

Original equipment manufacturers (OEM) currently account for the majority of the company’s sales.

Pataya Food Group’s sales reached 8 billion baht last year, 75% of which were from exports, with the remaining 25% coming from the domestic market.

On the investment front, Ms Sudatip said given the escalating Covid-19 outbreaks in Thailand and Vietnam, the company is considering revising its business strategies for the two countries.

Founded in 1979, Pataya Food Group is a manufacturer and distributor of canned and retort pouch seafood products. Some of their products include fish, shellfish, value-added products, pet food and pasteurised crab.

The group currently operates one factory and one marketing company in Vietnam.

In Thailand, the company owns one factory in Mahachai, which is in Samut Sakhon province.

“We will adjust our investment in some production lines in Vietnam to reduce business risk from the pandemic. However, we are still committed to expanding our investment in Vietnam because its economy is better than Thailand’s, with a growing number of middle-income people with lifestyles which fit our ready-to-eat cereals,” Ms Sudatip said.