THAILAND: Farms must employ technology to remain competitive, warns tangerine grower
According to executives at the Chiang Mai Golden Tangerine Farm Co, the only way for farmers to stay competitive in the global arena is to capitalise on the technological innovation around them.
At one of Thailand's largest tangerine farms, computer-controlled systems have been established to grade quality in packaged output and control water levels. Meanwhile, a controlled-atmosphere warehouse capable of holding 2,000 tonnes of produce extends the longevity of the tangerines to increase flexibility.
Ekapong Pholpipattanaphong, deputy-managing director of Chiang Mai Golden, also revealed a two year project to manufacture more bi-products from the tangerines and the company's policy to reduce retail prices by around 20%.
Chiang Mai Golden has been utilising high-tech methods in farming for years to keep production costs low and yield output high, but there has been no relief from fierce competition and the company attributes its economic viability to the use of technical systems despite the fall in the price of tangerines from Bt70-80 to Bt25-30.
To ensure this remains the case, the company has hired farm experts for advice on five important areas, and have applied planting technologies from Australia, Spain and Israel. It is also now offering free home delivery, quality guarantees and special packaging.
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