Finnish food company Raisio’s Thai partner Saha Pathanapibul announce plans to launch Benecol, a dietary supplement drink, in Thailand, indicating that the country still poses an attractive investment opportunity.
The first Benecol product was margarine that was brought to market in Finland in 1995. Today, the product line includes margarines, yoghurts, cereals, milk and olive oil. Because of regulatory issues, the availability of different products varies in different countries. Benecol products are Functional foods intended to reduce dietary cholestorol. The active ingredients are plant stanol esters.
According to stock analysts the launch of Benecol will help both Raisio and Saha Pathanapibul take advantage of expected growth in Thailand’s soft drink sector, with BMI predicting value sales to grow by 38% from 2008 to reach 3.41 billion US$ in 2013.