March 19, 2004,
just-food.com/Mark Rowe: While
the poultry industry continues to suffer, others
in Thailand have turned the food safety crisis into
increased profits. According to recent reports pizza
chains in Thailand have benefited hugely from the outbreak
of avian flu in the country. The Pizza Company, Thailand's
largest pizza chain, says it recorded 29% growth in
the first two months of this year, compared with the
same period last year.
Bill Heinecke, chairman of the Minor Food Group, which
owns The Pizza Company, said the significant growth
was driven by the switch in consumers' choice from chicken
to non-chicken dishes. Narai Pizzaria, another major
chain, has also seen double-digit growth since the outbreak
of the bird flu.
Thailand's pizza industry is estimated to be worth
2.5bn Thai Baht (US$63.4m).