Food and edible oil maker Lam Soon (Hong Kong) expects to reap benefits from the mainland's entry into the World Trade Organisation, with limited impact on its business from new competitors overseas. Group managing director Jim Tsao said prices of imported wheat - the raw material of its flour operation - will fall if import restrictions are relaxed when the mainland enters the WTO. Mr Tsao said preliminary talks between Washington and Beijing suggested the wheat import quota was likely to be increased from one million tonnes to 7.3 million tonnes. He said availability of imported wheat was key to production of high-quality flour. Flour production accounts for about 30 per cent of the company's turnover, while edible oil takes up 40 per cent. Year-on-year growth of edible oil sales in the first four months outpaced the 36 per cent growth recorded last year, according to Mr Tsao. Half of Lam Soon's mainland edible oil sales are destined for Guangdong. 'We intend to stick with our strategy of focusing business expansion on core products and the southern China market,' Mr Tsao said. He said although the company would face increased competition if the mainland opened its market after entering the WTO, Lam Soon's strong brand recognition and established sales network would keep it from experiencing substantial sales erosion. Expansion of its flour production capacity in the second half of the year is expected to see output grow 50 per cent by the end of the year.