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$50m instant coffee factory opens Long An   2010-03-28 - VietNamNet/VNS

Olam International, a Singapore-based global supply chain player in agricultural products, opened an instant-coffee manufacturing facility in Long An Province on Thursday

Located in the Nhut Chanh Industrial Park in Long An's Ben Luùc District, the new facility produces bulk spray-dried coffee powder, freeze-dried coffee granules, and coffee extracts to the unbranded and private label coffee segment.

Olam has invested US$50 million in this factory which is run by its subsidiary, Cafe Outspan Viet Nam Co Ltd.

Sunny Verghese, CEO and group managing director of Olam, said the Cafe Outspan Viet Nam factory is Olam's only soluble coffee facility in the world.

In the first phase it would consume 10,000 to 11,000 tonnes of coffee beans a year and produce 4,000 tonnes of coffee.

Its capacity will go up to 7,000 tonnes in the second stage within a year or two, and to 12,000 tonnes in the third phase. Verghese said products from the Cafe Outspan Viet Nam would be exported to Europe, Japan, Russia, the Mideast, and the US.

Olam has invested about $65 million in building five coffee processing plants in Viet Nam, all of the other four in the Central Highlands and specialising in green bean coffee, Verghese said.

The group is also involved in trading of pepper, cashew nuts, spices, and rice in Viet Nam, buying 150,000 tonnes of rice a year in the country.

Olam, which has been in Viet Nam since 1999, has annual revenues of $300 million and 800 employees in the country.

Luong Van Tu, a former deputy trade minister, appreciated Olam's effort to export instant coffee from Viet Nam, saying it would add value to the country's coffee beans, make drinkers around the world know about the true value of Vietnamese coffee, and create more employment opportunities.

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