Poultry sector set for capacity boost with $40m smart factory

United Overseas Bank (UOB) head of group commercial banking Eric Tham (left) and Singapore Poultry Hub CEO Joseph Heng with the hub's five shareholders at JTC Poultry Processing Hub @ Buroh. UOB will be furnishing a $40 million loan for the upcoming
United Overseas Bank (UOB) head of group commercial banking Eric Tham (left) and Singapore Poultry Hub CEO Joseph Heng with the hub's five shareholders at JTC Poultry Processing Hub @ Buroh. UOB will be furnishing a $40 million loan for the upcoming smart factory, which is set to help Singapore Poultry Hub boost productivity and capacity.PHOTO: UOB

Singapore Poultry Hub is setting up the first smart and green factory for the industry here with a $40 million loan from United Overseas Bank (UOB).

The new 29,384 sq m factory will help Singapore Poultry Hub to improve productivity by 26 per cent and increase capacity by 70 per cent, both firms said in a statement yesterday.

The hub is a joint venture between Mr Tan Chin Long, controlling shareholder of Boong Poultry, and four poultry producers and processors - Tong Huat Poultry Processing Factory, Kee Song Holdings, Sinmah Holdings (S) and Tysan Food.

Singapore Poultry Hub will work with partners such as Enterprise Singapore to employ smart technology at its new factory, including robotics, Industry 4.0 technologies and the industrial Internet of Things.

The smart factory will have a new waste management system that reduces waste generated by poultry processors. Instead of disposing of all the poultry waste, the system will convert part of it into protein, which is used as an ingredient for livestock feed.

This will help the hub to become more sustainable in its operations and reduce its waste by 60 tonnes a day, it said.

The waste management system was created under FoodInnovate, a multi-agency initiative led by Enterprise Singapore that aims to grow Singapore's food manufacturing industry through innovation.

UOB and Singapore Poultry Hub are also exploring ways, through UOB's cash management solutions, to help the poultry processor digitalise the collection of payments to reduce the use of cash and cheques.

Singapore Poultry Hub chief executive officer Joseph Heng said: "We recognise the need to use technology to ensure our competitiveness in the long term. As a small and medium-sized enterprise making an investment of this scale, we needed the support of a banking partner who not only could provide us with the financing required, but also advise us on the most relevant financial solutions for our needs."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 08, 2019, with the headline 'Poultry sector set for capacity boost with $40m smart factory'. Print Edition | Subscribe