Food industry takes bigger piece of pie
Adisseo Group, a France-based animal nutrition provider and a subsidiary of State-owned Sinochem Holdings Corp Ltd, recently opened a new phase of its factory in Nanjing, Jiangsu province, that can produce 180,000 metric tons annually of an important liquid component in animal feed.
The new facilities, opened in mid-September, are expected to lay a solid industrial foundation for boosting the penetration of the component, an essential amino acid called methionine, in both Chinese and global markets.
Along with the first phase of Adisseo's Nanjing plant, which opened in 2010 and was expanded in 2016, the overall capacity of the methionine plant will nearly double to 350,000 tons a year.
The expansion creates a significant competitive edge in costs along with its deepened competitive advantage in the global market, enabling the company to strive for a larger market share internationally, the company said.
"Low-cost and high-efficiency methionine has played, and will always play, an irreplaceable role in ensuring the stability of meat production and supply, promoting food security and saving land resources," said Yang Shihao, deputy general manager of Sinochem Holdings.
Adisseo Group was acquired by China National Bluestar (Group) Co Ltd, a subsidiary of Sinochem Holdings, in 2006. It is a core subsidiary and the only company focusing on animal nutrition in Sinochem's life sciences segment. Adisseo is also one of the few manufacturers that can produce liquid and solid methionine simultaneously, and it also has a vertically integrated production process for liquid methionine, the company said.
"With the new phase officially put into operation, our Nanjing facility will be well positioned to become one of the world's largest liquid methionine production platforms," said Jean-Marc Dublanc, CEO of Adisseo Group.
The company will also have the space and flexibility to optimize its production to cushion the impact of fluctuations in raw material and energy prices.
Construction on the new phase began in early 2018. Despite twists and turns created by factors such as the COVID-19 pandemic, it was completed on schedule and within budget, thanks to the support of various parties, said Francois Mailhos, the project's director.
Eating habits in China are changing with the country's economic progress, said Ding Lixin, a researcher at the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences in Beijing. Food consumption is rising and the types of food consumed are diversifying. Palates are becoming more sophisticated, and there is greater demand for convenience. That has dramatically transformed the agricultural industry, Ding said.
The most obvious change is the modernization of livestock production and the food supply chain, he said. Many investments are being made and some Chinese companies are rising to become global leaders. Processed food, such as canned food and products used by restaurants, have expanded quickly, Ding added.
Adisseo, with more than 2,500 employees, provides products and services to around 3,900 customers in over 110 countries and regions through its global distribution network. Its sales revenue amounted to 1.69 billion euros ($1.64 billion) in 2021.
China's advantages, including a complete industrial system, a supersized market, social stability and positive economic fundamentals over the long run, have created a good foundation for the development of foreign-funded enterprises, said Chen Chunjiang, director-general of the foreign investment administration department at the Ministry of Commerce.