The Korean strawberry is currently in the limelight in Southeast Asia—Hong Kong, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. Its unique sweet-and-sour taste, which consumers say is “out of this world,” has made it a great hit in local markets. The total export volume of the fruit increased from 2,815 tons in 2013 to 3,063 tons in 2014 and 3,312 tons in 2015. As of November 2016, 2,883 tons of strawberries were shipped overseas from Korea, which is 7% more than the same period a year earlier. Capitalizing on the interest in Korean strawberries overseas, the exporters and aT (Korea Agro-Fisheries & Food Trade Corp.) are hosting a series of promotions.
Come Try Fresh Korean Strawberry
Thailand is emerging as a new export market for Korean strawberries. The country imported USD 4 million worth of the fruit last year and the demand is high this year as well. The Bangkok office of aT and the Korean Strawberry Exporting Committee are planning several promotional events in the country.
A K-Strawberry Festival is taking place from December 2016 to March 2017. As part of the festival, the organizers are planning a Valentine’s Day event and other promotions where children, adults, and senior citizens will be able to enjoy Korean strawberries. Thai singer and actress Noona Nuengtida has been appointed an honorary celebrity ambassador and will personally participate in a number of related events. A coach of the national Taekwondo team of Thailand and his family members were recruited as models and appeared on a family-themed strawberry advertisement. In addition, various promotional tasting events are carried out in grocery stores. Some distributors offer one-hour delivery if Korean strawberries are ordered online.
Song Mi-jeong, the managing director at the Bangkok office of aT, said, "We have recruited an honorary ambassador and models to approach consumers with a familiar image. The actress who is the honorary ambassador has a bright personality and healthy image in Thailand." She added, "The advertising models are the family of a Korean Taekwondo coach who led the Thailand team to win four Olympic medals. Thai people think of him as a Korean hero, so we believe he is an excellent choice."
Targeting the Vietnamese Market
Vietnam is another strawberry import market growing fast. In less than a year since the Korean strawberries were exported there for the first time last February, the volume reached USD 1 million.
The Hanoi office of aT is carrying out various promotions with the goal of increasing the export volume to USD 2 million. It is running a taxi advertisement, promotions on social media, and sales events at large grocery stores, and making a TV commercial for Korean strawberries.
An associate of the Hanoi office of aT stated, "As soon as Korean strawberries appear in a local supermarket, they are sold out within minutes. That is how much Vietnamese consumers like the product." He emphasizes, "We need to prepare many experience events for local consumers to taste Korean strawberries."
# Tips / Different Ways to Enjoy Strawberries
Vitamin C in strawberries is known to be 10 times higher than in apples. With 80mg of Vitamin C for 100g of strawberries, the fruit is the queen of vitamin C. You can satisfy the daily recommended Vitamin C intake with just 6 strawberries. In addition, strawberry contains much folic acid and iron, and is therefore a natural nutritional supplement for pregnant women. You can enjoy strawberries not only fresh but in other forms as well.
- Strawberry Jam
Wash strawberries thoroughly -> Hull them -> Crush with hands -> Add sugar -> Boil down while adjusting the heat
- Strawberry Ice Cream
Put 4 cubes of ice in an ice cream container -> Add a half spoon of coarse salt -> Crush a strawberry -> Add milk and crushed strawberry to the ice cream container -> Add one spoon of strawberry syrup -> Close the cover and shake
- Strawberry Salad
Grind strawberries in a mixer to make a dressing -> Cut each strawberry into four pieces and mince walnut -> Wash fresh vegetables and remove moisture -> Mix cream cheese, honey, and minced walnut, and make them into ball shapes -> Mix fresh vegetables, strawberry, and cream cheese balls and add the strawberry dressing
- Strawberry Sticky Rice Cake
Boil adzuki beans that have been left to soak for half a day -> Grind the softened beans with a mixer -> Add sugar and boil down on light heat, then let the beans cool down -> Add sugar and salt to sticky rice powder and warm water to make batter -> Steam the sticky rice batter -> Cover a strawberry with ground beans -> Cover the layer of beans with sticky rice batter
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