Global manufacturer of agricultural products, Cargill will spend MYR 145 million (USD 34.7 million) to expand its production facility in Port Klang, Malaysia, to fulfill rising customer demand for specialty fats. The firm plans to boost dry palm fractionation capacity to produce a variety of specialty fats for use in chocolates, coatings, fillings and compounds, spreads, bakery fats, and other products.
Jennifer Shomenta, president and group leader for Cargill’s global edible oils solutions business stated the facility expansion is planned to be completed in late 2023 and it will also upgrade lab equipment and pilot plants at its Edible Oils R&D Center in Port Klang. Port Klang’s new facility is well-positioned to market finished specialty fats to customers in the Asia Pacific such as Korea and Japan, as well as semi-finished goods to Cargill sites across Europe, the Middle East, Russia, South America, and North America. The project will complement a nearly completed MYR 83 million (USD 19.8 million) facility that began a year ago.
Cargill’s investment is in line with the Malaysian government’s goal of encouraging downstream palm oil companies to move up the palm value chain. The firm will prioritize using palm oil that has been certified by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), which it has been a member of since 2004, on top of adhering to the Malaysian Sustainable Palm Oil (MSPO) certification. In particular, Cargill will focus on widening its specialty fats portfolio to include more products in food manufacturing such as chocolate confectionery, bakery, specialized nutrition, dairy replaces, to plant-based proteins. The broadening of its specialty fats portfolio will catapult Cargill to the forefront of specialty fats manufacturing, with state-of-the-art facilities and a strong, end-to-end sustainable supply chain.
Cargill has had a presence in Malaysia since 1978, and it has begun to expand its operations throughout Asia-Pacific. The firm’s total investment in Malaysia is estimated to reach MYR 415 million (USD 99 million). In Indonesia, the company announced plans to develop a palm oil refinery for MYR 829 million (USD 198 million) and developed new cooperation with Nestle to help the local cocoa growers. Cargill has also bought chocolate company Aalst in Singapore to extend its cocoa and chocolate products. Other investments in the region include programs that engage smallholder farmers in training on good agricultural practices and develop community conservation commitments, as well as support for sustainable coconut production through programs that engage smallholder farmers in training on good agricultural practices.
(Sources: Food Ingredients First; Food Navigator Asia)