Happy Food is a Korean company receiving attention for pioneering export routes to China with healthy and safe snacks for babies. Having started exports to mainland China and Hong Kong in 2013, it has quickly grown into a medium-size exporter. The company makes its products with only locally produced organic ingredients.
With Organic Rice, Health Benefits and Food Safety Come from Nature Itself
Happy Food is dedicated to making products reflecting consumer demands. Its success in China is based on the development of differentiated baby snacks and porridge products. Jung Mun-ju, CEO of Happy Food, said, “To ensure the safety of our products for children, we use only natural ingredients and no artificial additives such as preservatives or artificial colors." She explained, “The company's philosophy is to deliver the goodness of nature. We never use artificial additives or other cheap ingredients to reduce costs."
Healthy, processed rice products of Happy Food have earned recognition at home and overseas. In the first half of this year alone, the company exported KRW 50 million worth of its products to China. It is also diversifying its markets, with negotiations for new contracts in the US underway.
Rice Snacks Made Right from a Mother’s Standpoint
Happy Food produces only healthy products such as rice snacks for babies and adults, rice soup, crispy rice crust, ready-made porridges, and weaning food. Organic Baby Snack is a filling snack made with whole grains, which promotes the brain development of babies through stimulation by chewing. The Stick Mom product attracted a lot of attention at its launch as a great gripping exercise for babies, helping them to develop hand muscles.
Safe Snack for Family contains no synthetic chemical additives that are harmful to the body and is made by baking under heat and pressure instead of deep-frying in oil. As the demand for healthy rice snacks is on the rise, the company’s products became known to consumers through word of mouth, and inquiries from distributors poured in. As the products supplied to large distributors increased, so did the need for Happy Food to expand its facilities with an emphasis on hygiene and safety. The company developed a convenience porridge product for export. Ready to eat with the simple addition of hot water, it is made from puffed rice which gives the porridge its soft texture and high solvency.
Product Development Reflecting Consumers’ Demands
Organic Baby Snack was created as a result of checking and incorporating the demands of mothers with young babies. Jung said, "At the commercialization stage, we decided to give the snack a stick shape, so children can easily hold it in their hands. At the same time, we wanted to make sure the snack does not melt in the hand or smear around the lips." She added that Happy Food, through collaborative projects, actively utilizes market research data and design capacities of large companies and focuses on identifying the preferences of mother-consumers."
One of the greatest merits of Happy Food is its usage of organic rice grown in Korea as the main ingredient and the elimination all chemical additives such as swelling agents or preservatives in consideration of children’s health. By promoting these strengths in the Chinese market, the company has been able to increase awareness of its products among the Chinese upper middle class and increase its export volume to the country.
Jung said, "Once we obtain the organic food certification in China and register as a health food, we will advance further into the Chinese market. We will seek cooperation with local buyers specializing in functional rice products for babies. With their help and knowledge of the baby food market, our expansion in China will be much easier.”
In addition to processed organic food, Happy Food plans to launch new kinds of functional convenience products, such as porridge and rice, targeting the elderly. This will let the company increase its share in the convenience food market in the future. Currently, it is expanding its sales in China and the US, preparing to enter Southeast Asian markets, and developing a functional product for consumers with high blood pressure and diabetes.
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