Weakening yen to intensify competition in food: agency
The China Post news staffTAIPEI, Taiwan -- A weakening yen is expected to intensify competition in Taiwan's food market, said the Industry and Technology Intelligence Service (ITIS) under the Food Industry Research and Development Institute yesterday.
February 23, 2013, 12:01 am TWN
The agency made the remarks while releasing its latest survey on Taiwan's food market during the fourth quarter of last year and how it will fare this year.
A major focus during the event was the yen depreciation, which is set to make Japanese food imports cheaper.
“Japan is a major importer and its food products are favored by many Taiwanese people,” ITIS said. “We'll pay close attention on how the yen depreciation will impact Taiwan food industry's raw materials supply, competitiveness and technology advancement.”
In terms of competitiveness, ITIS said that due to the yen devaluation, the price gap between Japanese and Taiwanese food is expected to narrow. “Local consumers will be offered with more attractive choices,” ITIS said.
The agency cited the following food products as the most threatened by Japanese competition: seasonings, grain-based baked goods, candy and chocolates. “We really have to watch the situation closely, especially during the first quarter,” it said.
During the first quarter, Taiwan's food production is expected to hit NT$138.2 billion, a decline of 7 percent to the NT$148.7 billion for the fourth quarter of last year, ITIS forecasted
As for the whole year, Taiwan's total food production is predicted to reach NT$596.9 billion, a rise of 2.44 percent from 2012.