The Siam Orchid Culture Co., Ltd. is situated at 135/3 Moo. 12 Tambon Cheang Doi Ampher Doisaket Chiang Mai by the former, Mr. Nikorn Kamyai. The aim of the company is to produce and distribute the orchid: Dendrobium Nobile Hybrid. The company, now, owns the 8-2-0-rai orchid farm.
In 1983, Mr. Nikorn, in cooperation with Mr. Jiro Yamamoto, brought a new hybrid which was prodeced by Mr. Jiro Yamamoto himself to try the new production experiments in Thailand. Khun Nikorn has been in charge of production management, which is emphasised on the R&D especially the tissue culture in the laboratory. Thus, there are a number of new hybrids as the outcome. The famoue one is the Nobile hybrid, which was copied right to only Mr. Jiro Yamamoto. This innovation has been called “Yamamoto Dendrobium Type”, as a result.
However, in 1993, Khun Nikorn together with his friends, established the Chiang Mai Business Center Co., Ltd.; and was registred in 1994. The company has fulfilled the research and developmet of such orchid as many as 1,500 hybrids.
Then he formed the Siam Orchid Culture Company to handle all the marketing issue. The orchid was named Dendrobium Nobile Type. The rich in varieties of this particular flower and all of the methodologies that the company has researched and developed have brought not only Mr. Jiro Yamamoto but also Siam Orchid Culture Co., Ltd. identity in the field of the qualitative Dendrobium Nobile distributor in the world market. As a result, the demand of Siam Orchid Culture product has never been decreased.
During1997-1999, there were 538,500 orders for the bottle-orchid, about 15,060,000 pieces for the plantlets about 5-8 cms.and 22, 873,000 pieces for orchid size 20-30 cms.. The approximated value was 850 million baht.
Anyway, the capacity of the company couldn’t reach such high demand. We could fulfill just only 1% of the needs. We has faced the problems concerned operational and funds.
In the production of the 5-6 cms. orchid, we need the fund 1.1 million baht per rai for the New hybrid process ,about 1.5 million baht per rai for the mericlone process and 17 million baht per rai for the cutting process.In addition, for the 20-30 cms. orchid, the fund is 1.4 million baht per rai for hybrid process , 17 million baht per rai for mericlone process and 15.2 million baht per rai for cutting process. And if we want to produce the flower type, we need to invest 2.6 million baht for rai for the New hybrid process, 3 million baht for mericlone process and 19.4 million baht for cutting process.
The problem shown above has suggested the company to search for the investers in order to fulfill the excessively- growing demand.
THE HISTORY OF DENDROBIUM NOBILE
The nobile belongs to the Asian Wild Orchid varietis. The variety can be found in Mianmar, India, Laos , especially, in Thailand. The outstanding characteristic of this particular variety is that the flowers will be bloomed at each node of sheath. The nobile can be found at the 500-2000 meter above sea level. In Thailand, especially, the orchid can be found in Chiang Mai, Lamphun, Lampang, Mae Hong Son, Chiang Rai and etc. The orchid normally blooms during the hor season for they have to pass the winter drought of such places.
Characteristics of the Nobiles:
1. The Tropical(big) type is called 4 N
2. The Winter(small) type is called 2 N
2. The flowers blossom along side the cane of each node.
3. The flowers are varied in sweet fragrance.
4. Can grow naturally.
5. Can bloom after going through a period of winter
6. The natural colour is not many. (After 100 years of development, it becomes the world most colorful orchid)
The history of Hybrid development.
The history of Dendrobium nobile was known since before world war I. The very first people who valued such flower was English. They developed the varieties. Next, Mr. Jiro Yamamoto (1960) also valued the orchid; as a result, he had tried to improve and develop the varieties and sent out to the world market. When we want to develop a good hybrid, we need 15 years; and if we want them to flower, we need 5 more years. The problem is that the climate in Japan is not suitable for the plant. It can be grown in Japan for only 6 months. Then it has to be kept and fed in the greenhouse using the heater. Thus, it is not worth if we want to perform the mass production of such plants.
THE ROYAL HORICULTURE SOCIETY is the book that records all the individuals who produce a new variety of any orchid. It claimed Mr. Jiro Yamamoto’s 523 varieties of nobiles and called them “Yamamoto” type.
After Khun Nikorn can produce the plant, the “Dendrobium Nobile” was called again.The Nobile is the pot plant for decoration because they are more durable than general cut flowers. It is famous in the world market, but the price is too high for only Japan can produce the plant wich make it costly. The financial factor, which is the unstable of Japanese Yen and US Dollars. So Japan can’t be the producer anymore.
There are 2 ways of orchid breeding
1. Asexual Reproduction is using parts of orchid, not the pollen, in breeding. The Siam Orchid Culture makes use of
1. Division : using knife or scissor cut the roots and apply lime at the wound in order to make it quicky dry and prevent the bacteria to enter. The leave the plant in the pot until the new bulb coming and having the short root. Next, move the plant to the bed. The perfect time for division is beginning of summer for it is the time of orchid growing and giving the bulb after during winter. The new bulb is perfect to be planted in the beginning of rainy season.
Ususlly, the Dendrobium will have bulb from the bud on the side of the stem. Sometimes, the bulbs will come from the bud at the cut stem. The bulb can be planted once it is about 2-3 internode or use the bulb with the tip to plant.
The aims of such planting are
1. To produce parents.
2. To produce the pseudobulbs that can be merriclone. This will take 6-8
2. Cutting : This method is popular in Japan and Hawai. The process is cut the stem, which each internode must has bud, of orchids. Then, rooting for bulbs about 5-8 cms, which will take 6-8 months. The orchids will be identical to the parents, but the are small in amount.
3. Merriclone (tissue culture): using the internode with buds grow in flasks around 18-24 months. Then, deflask the plantlets. It will take 6-8 months. The advantages of this method are:
-Will get a large amount of orchids that are identical to parents in the limit of time
- Will get the strong orchids
- Will get the new hybrids with new colour or double in chromosome, which is good for hybridization
2. pollination and seeding : to get new hybrids.
after pollination, the petals will dry within a few days. The colour of ovary will change and grow bigger, called pod. This process will take 6-8 months. Then remove the seeds in the pods to grow in flasks about 8-12 months. Next deflasks the plantlets about 5-8 cms. It will take 6-8 months.
Period of Dendrobium breeding
Process of Merriclone
1. - cut the stem; the internode.
2. - 5-8 cms. bulb with 3-4 buds. Time 6-8 months.
3. - tip buds and stem buds to grow in flasks.
4. - Seedling around 18-24 months
- increase protochrome 1 bud : 3,000-4,000 plants
5. - transplants into bottle; 1 bottle per 40 plants
- Orchids with flower identical to parents.
Research and development of Siam Orchid Culture Co., Ltd.
The researchers of Siam Orchid Culture Co., Ltd., who agree upon the stability of Dendrobium Nobile varities’ structure, incorporating with the Office of Atomic Energy for Peace have changed the inner structure of chromosome of such orchid so that they can be the pot plant in the future.
Anyway, the process of genetic engineering at Siam Orchid Culture has been as same as that of other countries, where the technology in breeding is advance, use to produce the product into the world market.
Marketing and Distributing
Transportation and cost
The kinds of business run by the company:
There are 2 types of Dendrobium Nobile demand in the world market
The production for flower When seedling size 5-8 cm. (any kind of breeding) to be planted in the community pots and individual pots, it will take 12 months to get the plant of 1 foot high. Fertilizer and medicines should be added. If wanting flowering, keep the mature (12- month-old) at 5-13 C. for 1 month. The buds will appear everyday and they will be bloomed within 3 months (totally for this process 4 months) So, the flowering period can be controlled.
Selling in the retail market To produce the flowering plants according to demand of particular country, depends on production process.The cutting was the initial method in Japan and Hawaii. Actually, an internode provide 1 plant, size 5-8 cm., and can be sold for 1 plant (with flower). Anyway, if the breeding has been done in Lab, 1 plant can provide 3,000 plantlets in flasks. Then deflask,which provides 3,000 small orchids with same colour.
Thus, the company chooses the second one because it successfully provides so many orchids.
The weak point of the first method is costly.
The third method, however, is producing new hybrid. After pollenating, there will be pods of new hybrids. Takes the pods to grow in flasks and get the seedlings. The company uses the hybrids that have been developed over a hundred years for the third step.
Besides, the company has focused on R&D that the company’s reference of our Dendrobium nobile is ths Royal Hoeticulture Society, which keeps recording those who brought up, research on the structure of Dendrobium varieties. That’s why our orchids can fulfill all the needs of the market.
The company breeds over 2,000 varieties of new hybrids and after sending the products to the customer, the products are well accepted by any country, including Japan, the former of this Nobile types.
As being said before, there are two ways of selling the orchid with flower: retailing and wholesaling.
Most of the customers will buy plants size 20-30 cm. After getting the flower, they will send the orchid to the bidding market, the wholesaling market. The famous markets are Japan and Hong Kong.
The characteristics of bidding
Customer will specify the orchid, before entering the bidding room. They will pay the deposit before bidding. Then, they will specify the quantity, color and other characters of orchids. After that, they will bid. The bidding officer will give the bidding card for confirming the bidding result.
To produce Dendrobium Nobile as pot plants requires the delicate process and high technology.
In the developed countries such as USA, Japan, Korea and Holland have faced the extreme weather such as inwinter. They use heater to help growing orchids. Thus, it makes cost of orchid production high.
However, the Nobile, as the product of breedign between the Asian wild tropical plants and the temperate plants such as Japanese wild orchid, is durable for cold temperature, even at 0 C. Thus, it becomes the most suitable orchiid for such climate.
Example of the planting on the 2 ngan (200 sq. wa or 400 sq. m.), comsumes 200 liters/day of fuel. So the period of producing the orchid needs to include wages and fuel cost. It is very high cost. But if taking the flowering orchid, it will save 2400 liters of fuel for the Nobile needs cool weather until flowering about 120 days. When the company can produce and sell the orchid at the lower price, it is advantage to compete in the world market.
There are 3 types of seedling offered by the company:
1. Seedlings grow in flasks that take 18-24 months to produce. Supa orchid Interlab CO., Ltd. will grow such plants. Then Siam Orchid Culture will take another 3 months to grow and sell after that. In 1999, the volume was 240,000 bottles, amount of 30.65 million baht.
2. Orchid size 20-30 cm to grow for flower. The company sends samples for customers. In 1999, sale volume was 5,145,000 plants, amount of 49.29 million baht.
3. Orchid size 20-30 cm to grow for another 4 months, tehn they can be sold as flowering orchids. In 1999, the sale volume was 7,550,000 plants, amount of 208.75 million baht.
Outstanding feature of Siam Orchid Culture
1. flowers are as same as that of parents (for the company has used the parents that have been developed for more than a hundred year to breed)
2. the color of flowers is varied in the same plants (show the pedegree of parents)
3. the fragrance will be 90 %
4. the duration of orchids as pot plants are 1-2 months
5. they can be bloomed in only the Northern and Northeastern part of Thailand.
6. the company has developed new hybrids that siut to grow naturally in Thailand that make cost and time saved.
7. The quality is as same as that of the foreign orchid, sometimes are better.
Summary of Research and Development in Lab and Bed
The company has conducted research and development of Nobile in lab and bed for 30 years. The detail is as followed:
1. The production of Nobile in lab
In 1987, Mr. Nikorn Kamyai and Supa Orchid Co., Ltd. (presently is Supa Orchid Intelab Co., Ltd.) had researched on tissue culture and new hybrids (seedlings)
Besides, the company had cooperated with other five companies for breeding. The findings of company indicates tha gene, pressure, temperature, light and time are the critical factors for orchid growing. If the company produces the orchids according to natural step and ample time, the production will be successful and can be agricultural industry.
If the company have the standard of technology and nature, together with good cooperation, we can compete in the word market.
2. The production of Nobile in bed
In 1995, together with a military camp 32, Lampang province, the company had experimented the growing of Nobile by providing the seedling to the imprison soldiers and soldiers who were free from battle to grow.
The process begins with deflasks, taking care and seedling to grow. It takes 2 years of successful experiment. Then, the company brought Malaysian customer to buy and exported on 26 September 1997. In the same year, the company and another military camp (parachute trooper), Chiang Mai, ran the same business as previous and succeed as well.
Nowadays, the company has researched and developed new management system by encouraging the farmers to grow the orchid and the company will buy the orchid. It already done in Bangkok, Nakorn Patom and Chiang Mai at Chiang Dao and Doi Saket.
3. New Hybrids
The company pays attention to the world market and has provided new hybrids continuously. The new hybrids will come out around 400-500 types each year. Also, there is the genetical development of the chromosome by studying the density of Gamma for future development.
The company has Thai Embassy in each country as coordinator. Th embassy will search for the importer that can be the dealer in a certain country.
Th ecompany, in cooperation with Thai Air Force, uses a stupa at Do Inthanon, where it is 2000 meter above the sea level as a showroom for the wrld to see how the orchids flower. Then the marketing section will negitiate the business. The business concerns the production period in Thailand and will be distributed abroad within 4 months.
5. Foreign affair
The company coordinates with bidding market in Japan and Taiwan and be able to sell the mature orchids as sample products for customers who need to try their market first.
The company has experienced the business and the products are able to compete in the world market. The company aims to use Thailand as the base of production, management and marketing; and want to use almost 100% Thai products to be franchised all over the world.
The company has set the company policy in order that when the company has the limit of capacity to sell the product according to the world market, the company can urge the farmers to grow seedling instead. As being known that Thailand is the suitable place to grow orchid according to the experiments, research and developments of the company so far.