Giant Japanese Producer Aims to sell 4B Eggs a Year in India

JAPAN - Japan's largest egg producer, Ise Foods, is teaming up with Suzuki Motor in a joint venture to launch major egg production operations in the enormous Indian market, aiming to selling 4 billion eggs annually, about 5 per cent of India's current egg consumption.
calendar icon 27 December 2017
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Nikkei Asian Review reports that Ise Foods also plans to cooperate in developing poultry farms and improving food distribution efficiency, and contribute to India's farm sector as a whole.

"I think India will reach in about 15 years the level of the culinary lifestyle it took Japan 40 years to reach," said company Chairman Hikonobu Ise in an interview.

The company aims to deliver eggs that are safe and have high nutritional content by taking the Ise model to India unchanged, he said. That includes computer-controlled hen houses, automatic egg collection, shipping at temperatures below 10° C, antibiotic-free vaccinations, and prompt packing systems without any human handling.

"In order to realize the Ise model, we will take equipment and so forth from Japan," Ise said.

Promising Asian markets

Ise Foods has been accelerating its move into promising Asian markets in recent years, recognizing that the Japanese market is already mature.

"Domestically, companies are being worn down by competition among themselves. In Asia, people on average consume one-fifth to one-half as many eggs per capita as in Japan, so the competition is not very stiff yet," the chairman said.

Ise Foods began shipping eggs in Thailand and Vietnam this year, and is in the final stages of negotiations with Philippine restaurant industry giant Jollibee Foods, expecting to reach an agreement soon. The company is also in discussions with the Ahsan Group of Bangladesh, and the Salim Group of Indonesia.

In India, Ise said the company is currently looking at sites on which to build poultry farms around the city of Surat in the western state of Gujarat. Initially, it plans to build two 20-acre farms, with 300,000 chickens to be raised on each and production to start at around 500,000 eggs a day. Once the company chooses local partners, new joint ventures could be set up with the Ise Suzuki India joint venture.

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