Hidden Opportunities In Thailand For F&B Manufacturing

Why F&B industry players are shifting their sights from Singapore to Thailand as a base for their food and beverage manufacturing operations in APAC.

Picture Thailand and you’ll likely envision crystal-clear oceans, lush northern greenery, and cheap, delicious food and drink. This appealing consumer image should excite F&B industry players too. Thailand’s abundant natural resources, low prices, and central location in APAC make it a strong candidate for manufacturing operations. But it’s the little-known package of generous incentives and support from the government that makes Thailand a serious contender for your APAC production hub. Find out more below👇


  • In The News: Cola x ketchup, Moolec launches pork flavored soybeans, W.H.O slams aspartame, and more.

  • Event: Join Healthy Beverage Innovation APAC, July 5th, 3PM SGT

  • Innovation Deep Dive: Why Thailand is APAC’s Future F&B Manufacturing Hub

    • Strong Incentives to Setup Manufacturing in Thailand

    • A Singapore+1 Strategy

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📰 In The News

A curation of our favorite F&B innovation stories from the week. Can be read in less than a 🧻 break.

📆 EVENT - Discover The Big Beverage Boom Taking Over APAC

The healthy beverage trend is sweeping through APAC showering the region with a deluge of revitalizing drinks. This Wednesday, July 5th, your writer will be joining the Healthy Beverage Innovation APAC hosted by FoodNavigator Asia and NutriIngredients Asia to discuss the trend with a leading panel of experts. The discussion will cover exciting topics including:

  • 🧉Plant-based alternatives

  • 🧉 Strategies for sugar reduction

  • 🧉 Functional ingredients that cater to today's health-conscious consumers, and MUCH more

If you’re interested in learning more about innovations bubbling up in the beverage category in APAC, then don’t miss out and sign up below:

Event Details

Title: Healthy Beverage Innovation APAC

Date & Time: July 5th, 3PM SGT

Duration: 90 minutes

🚀 Innovation Deep Dive: Why Thailand is APAC’s Future F&B Manufacturing Hub

Weekly deep dive into an F&B trend. Can be read in less than a 🚋 ride.

As global supply chains pivot in response to geo-economic shifts, Thailand is emerging as an unexpected hub for F&B manufacturing in the Asia Pacific region. Not only does the nation sit strategically at the heart of Asia, but it also offers attractive infrastructure, financial incentives, and resources which could become a game changer for your business strategy.

Thailand, traditionally a cornerstone for trade, has witnessed sustained economic growth in the last decade. This has ignited a growing consumer class who are willing to spend a disproportionate amount of their income on food. Combine this with a booming tourist sector, and you have a thriving market for both luxury and affordable food and drink products.

photo of fields in thailand

Yet, the core appeal of Thailand goes beyond its consumer market. The country possesses an abundance of natural resources—land, water, and fresh produce—that are pivotal for the F&B sector, providing a significant edge in cost efficiency. Furthermore, its excellent logistics infrastructure, a legacy of its history as a key trade hub, enables seamless import and export processes, making it an ideal manufacturing base.

Indeed, Thailand's appeal as a business destination is well recognized; it's ranked second in South East Asia for ease of doing business, bolstered by high English proficiency and a welcoming business environment. Yet, where Thailand truly distinguishes itself is in the generous incentives offered by the government to companies establishing a manufacturing presence.

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Strong Incentives to Setup Manufacturing in Thailand

Thailand offers various industries (including F&B) strong incentives to manufacture in Thailand. Thailand’s Board of Investment (BOI) support is perhaps the most generous on offer.

The BOI offers 10+ years of corporate income tax exemption, tariff-free import of machinery, raw materials, and ingredients, and more to companies with innovative technology, processes, or patents if they set up production in Thailand. In return for generous benefits, the government is seeking to upskill the economy through opportunities that come from accommodating innovators. According to local expert Henry Woodward-Fisher, this scheme is a boon for players big and small.

It’s surprising how few organizations are aware of the BOI scheme. Every time I tell clients about it, they’re shocked by the opportunities on offer.

The Thai government wants companies to use this scheme. The criteria are quite open, so everyone from startups to big corporates can and should look into it. The BOI offers in person and online consultations to help companies learn about and apply to the scheme. They’ll also help you connect with partners and opportunities in Thailand.

Henry Woodward-Fisher

Another notable organization supporting F&B players in Thailand is Food Innopolis. This is a state-sponsored food innovation hub based at Thailand Science Park which supports F&B organizations to connect with relevant agencies such as BOI, the Revenue Department, Food and Drug Administration, the National Food Institute, Testing and accreditation service organizations, FoSTAT, universities, and research institutes. In short, Food Innopolis supports you with information and networking to ensure you make the most of opportunities in the Thai market.

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Through entities like the BOI and Food Innopolis, Thailand is extending invitations to companies to take advantage of initiatives such as tax exemptions, tariff-free imports, and even logistical support. Interestingly, these perks are not just available to all and sundry. Companies that bring something innovative in machinery, production processes, or patented products to the Thai market have the best chance of reaping these benefits.


Say (or Google) the words “food hub APAC” and Singapore surely is the first thing to come to mind. The country has made significant investments to place itself as APAC’s leading food hub, such as investing over $100 million into achieving 30% food self-sufficiency by 2030. To support its aims, Singapore offers a suite of incentives to F&B players that establish operations in the country.

Yet thanks to the previously-mentioned benefits, Thailand is becoming an increasingly attractive country for the title of go-to manufacturing hub in APAC for global F&B companies.

I'm seeing a lot of companies gravitate to set up an Asia base in Singapore, but then realize that it's expensive and uncompetitive for F&B manufacturing. Singapore still has a lot advantages, but a +1 model whereby a company does some work in Singapore and also does manufacturing/ R&D /assembly / other work in Thailand is a serious consideration for many F&B companies.

Henry Woodward-Fisher

Singapore is a great place to do business and offers world-class support for food and beverage companies to set up there. But there’s no denying that it’s expensive and by its own admission, resource scarce. Thailand has positioned itself to plug Singapore’s gaps.

For many companies, the appeal of having a presence in both markets means the best of both worlds: Singapore for operations and sales activities, and Thailand to carry out resource-intensive activities like manufacturing or R&D. But as we saw last week, Thailand is also a viable alternative for end-to-end operations for your business.

Whether “plus one” or “the only one”, Thailand is a strong option for F&B manufacturing in APAC. It’s about time the industry took note.

Interested in Opportunities in Thailand?

While the BOI and Food Innopolis are excellent starting points for understanding the breadth of opportunities Thailand presents, navigating the intricacies of a new market can be a daunting task. It’s here that GourmetPro’s network of elite local experts can step in, with their intimate understanding of the Thai market, to guide you every step of the way—from regulations and partnership building to targeted market research.

It's high time the F&B industry took a closer look at Thailand, not just as another manufacturing destination, but as an emerging powerhouse in the Asia Pacific region. Is your business ready to explore this exciting opportunity? Start building your strategy with the GourmetPro team.

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