Thailand's natural extracts and essential oils industry is in full bloom, stemming from seeds sown by Thai-China Flavours and Fragrances Industry (TCFF). As the industry's pioneer, TCFF produces scents, oils and extracts for spas and hotels, food and beverage, cosmetic and pharmaceutical applications.
"Perfume is used in many of the products we use throughout the day. We can produce these perfumes using Thai plants," says managing director Sathaporn Kietthanakorn.
TCFF's latest developments include natural colouring agents extracted from plants endemic to Thailand. These agents, which may be used instead of synthetic food colouring, will be launched at a cosmetics exhibition this month.
Under TCFF's Nanotechnology Development Project, the company has developed products such as Pillow Mist. TCFF uses nanotechnology to extend the soothing effects of Pillow Mist's active ingredient from two to eight hours. This ingredient is also derived from an indigenous Thai plant.
"We go back to our Thai traditions and blend them with our technology to develop new products for our customers," says marketing manager Sakorn Kietthanakorn. Many of these customers are leading hotel and spa chains such as Banyan Tree Holdings, for which TCFF exclusively manufactures tailor-made products.
Creating more products to meet the needs of customers in local and international markets is the goal of TCFF's research and development (R&D) department, which works closely with the company's market research team. Since forming a joint venture with Guangzhou Baihua Flavours and Fragrances in 1988, TCFF continues to develop its R&D via collaborations with educational institutions such as Chiang Mai University.
To increase the regional market for its products, TCFF plans to intensify its operations in Indonesia's halal food and beverage industry, and the aromatherapy and cosmetics markets of Singapore and Malaysia. TCFF seeks partners with similar products or that are well-established distributors in these countries.
TCFF ensures the quality of its products beginning with the raw material, which includes the careful selection of plant species, planting and harvesting. The company's quality-control protocols comply with standards set by the International Organization for Standardization, Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points and Good Manufacturing Practice.
Integral to TCFF's quality control is the training of its farmers, which underscores its long-term commitment to the local farming community. The company's new factory in Chiang Rai, where the colder climate supports a wider variety of plants, will also benefit farmers in the province. "We cannot run our business without the local farmers," Sathaporn says.
Thai-China Flavours and Fragrances Industry