• Swift Foods expansion hinges on AEC opportunities


    Listed poultry firm Swift Foods Inc. (SFI) said it will check out the potential opportunities by the planned Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) economic community (AEC) first before it makes any decision to expand its operations.

    Francisco Segovia, SFI director and treasurer, told reporters after the company’s stockholders meeting that the company will “observe what happens first with the Asean open market” before making plans for expansion.

    The company has its chicken dressing and processing operations based in Palawan and is selling and distributing live and dressed chickens under the “Sariwanok” brand.

    Although retaining “Swift Foods” as its company name, it is not manufacturing products under the Swift brand anymore. The Swift brand of meat products (i.e. hotdogs, hams) is now owned by Century Tuna manufacturer Century Pacific Food Inc. (CPFI) after SFI’s parent RFM Corp. sold the Swift trademark to CPFI in 2012.

    SFI now concentrates only on raising chickens. It operates and distributes poultry in Palawan, which accounts for a “very minimal” market share in the area which is “not enough to supply the whole of Palawan.”

    Besides its office, feeds warehouse, and cold storage facility all based in Puerto Princesa in Palawan, the company now also owns a single property in Mandaluyong City — the Pioneer Office Building.

    Asked what is next for Swift Foods, Segovia said: “We still don’t know as of this time. But basically the plan is to try to create modal farms to make sure that [the farms in Palawan are]reaching their standard.”

    “We’re trying to perfect our production so that we [can improve]into world standard production. If you can get into world standard production, then there is a chance of growing chickens and increasing your population. To me, [you can grow the company]if you can get into a level wherein you can beat the prices of Thailand and the rest of Asean,” he added.

    The company has no plans of extending its reach other than in Palawan as of today, but it is “open” to any partnership opportunities along the way.

    SFI reduced its net losses in the first nine months of the year, down to P6.22 million from a net loss of P37.44 million in the same period last year, while revenues declined to P46.81 million from P51.26 million a year ago.

    Incorporated in 1994 and formerly the agribusiness and meat division of RFM, SFI is now a medium-sized poultry company operating under the Sariwanok brand. It sells 65 percent of its total production to distributors, while the other 35 percent are for supermarkets, groceries, hotels, restaurants, and fast food chains among others.


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