Rice is packaged at the Song Hau Food Company in the Mekong Delta city of Can Tho (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – SunRice Group has completed the acquisition of a rice processing mill in the Mekong Delta province of Dong Thap, the first direct financial investment of the Australian business in Vietnam.

The Vietnamese Trade Office in Australia cited SunRice as saying that this is an important step towards establishing a fully vertically integrated and sustainable supply chain in Vietnam.

This firm will invest in improving and expanding the mill and purchasing equipment, in order to increase whitening and polishing capacity and to add a new packing line. This will ensure that the mill satisfy high quality and safety standards and customers’ requirements. 

The mill is anticipated to be fully operational during the first half of 2019 with a processing capacity of around 260,000 dry paddy tonnes per year.

[Video: Vietnamese rice now top quality on the international market]

SunRice CEO Rob Gordon said the purchase of a fully owned mill in Vietnam is the latest in a series of acquisitions and investments that have been made to advance SunRice’s 2022 Growth Strategy.

He added his business has also signed memoranda of understanding with two Mekong Delta provincial governments. These documents commit the parties to grow sustainably sourced rice to a quality and specification tailored to the firm’s end markets, and, in time, to grow IP-protected rice varieties bred specifically for SunRice.

SunRice has become an established player in the Mekong Delta rice industry and now accounts for over 5 percent of all Vietnamese rice exports and more than 50 percent of its Japonica style rice exports, according to Gordon.-VNA