CMU recognises the importance of the use of technology and innovation in systemic production in a way that takes into account efficiency, management, and application to accommodate future changes, and it strives to support the growth of the food industry. Recently, iExtract, Thailand’s first-ever high-value extract innovation facility, was launched to accommodate the extraction of active compounds in industrial crops. The Minister of Agriculture and Cooperatives presided over the opening ceremony, which was also attended by CMU administrators and researchers. It is expected to generate more than 100 million baht growth per year.
The iExtract and the Pilot Plant for High Quality Krathom Extraction, operated by the CMU Food Innovation and Packaging Centre (FIN), has pushed the capacity in innovating and developing high value extracts through technological innovation that allows high purity substances to be extracted, which is what several institutions have recently been interested in. It is applicable in many industries, including food dietary supplements, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics and personal care, as well as in the extraction of active compounds of plants such as cannabis, hemp or krathom. This is an important step for CMU in becoming a leader in obtaining high value extracts with high purity and it will set up a foundation for promoting krathom planting, care, cultivation and processing, and a comprehensive system for its development as an herb, starting from raw material production to high quality extraction.
Equipped with advanced tools such as a solvent extractor, a CO2 extractor with a pressure of 600 bars and a wiped-film still with a vacuum pump, the iExtract will help promote the utilisation of plant extracts to attain economic success. This is in line with the National Strategy and the CMU proactive strategy in Food and Health Innovation, along with Elderly Care through integrative cooperation with related agencies, which can induce social development in various dimensions. Insights from different disciplines are combined to drive the country’s growth, and distribution of incomes and opportunities, leading to a more equal distribution of wealth and sustainable socio-economic development.