Blog: Getting lobsters on the shelf in China is not just the snack industry's problem
Andy Morton | 11 July 2012
Cheesy does it
A guest blog from PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi the Financial Times today caught my eye. The company has just opened a new manufacturing plant in China that, it hopes, will help extend the reach of its Lays potato chips, which Nooyi says have now been tried by 40% of the country's population.
Lays has done well because the company has marketed flavours that fit in with the vast choice of snack options people in China look for. So, instead of boring old beef & tomato, there's hot-and-spicy fish, wasabi, and Sichuan-style hot pot flavours. My favourite when I lived in south-west China was lobster and cheese (see picture), mostly because of the packet's decidedly decadent cover model who seems to be enjoying what can only be described as a cheese waterfall.
Let's hope PepsiCo can be as imaginative with its beverages, even though the need is less - beverages don't have to deal with the traditional range of choice in snacks.
Where the two industries do share a problem is the lack of uniform grocery stores across China. I bought those lobster potatoes chips in WoWo, a chain of convenience stores you'll only find in Sichuan. If I'd been in Shanghai I would likely have bought them in Lawson. Other provinces have their own grocery chains, while there are also the ubiquitous mom-and-pop shops that sell the same things but in one-eighth of the space (and never cold beer). This means manufactures must strike separate deals with all of these regional variations to cover the whole country, severely limiting a company's reach.
Like most things in China, though, it'll change soon enough. The Japanese-owned 7-11, which has been in China since 2004, is expanding rapidly through China's second-tier cities and, from what I could see, is winning the fight against local convenience stores by having clean, brightly-lit units and a good range of items (plus cold beer!).
That's got to be good news for PepsiCo, and fans of lobster and cheese potato chips.
Collecting wine is big business – and so is faking it. So, how do you tell your Chateau Lafite from your Chateau La Counterfeit?...
Here in London, the second Wine Week has kicked off to coincide with UK wine trade event London Wine Fair. ...
Commuting in London is a drag. It’s overcrowded, sweaty and rarely goes to plan. In fact, it’s enough to turn a person to drink....
When it comes to market speculation, a company holds the prerogative to comment or not. Most times it is the latter, but we journalists are always grateful for any quote that we can get....
- Are Coca-Cola, A-B InBev at a FIFA Crossroads?
- Interview - Illva Saronno CEO Augusto Reina
- Will South Africa Raise Drinking Age to 21?
- Focus - The Risks of Acquisitions
- SABMiller & Meantime: Notes for the New Owner
- Roust takes on Bushmills distribution in Russia
- Brown-Forman completes Kentucky acquisition
- Campari opens office in Canada
- Coca-Cola, A-B InBev express FIFA concerns
- A-B InBev cuts ribbon on Vietnam brewery
- Global Tequila insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends research
- Africa: The Final Frontier for Beer
- Global rum insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends research
- Global Scotch whisky insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends research
- Diageo plc (DGE) - Financial and Strategic SWOT Analysis Review