Tip Top dips into China ice cream market

By Jim Cornall contact

- Last updated on GMT

Tip Top is hoping a trial program introducing its ice cream to China through Tmall will be a sweet success.
Tip Top is hoping a trial program introducing its ice cream to China through Tmall will be a sweet success.

Related tags: Ice cream, Milk

Will Hokey Pokey be a hit in Hangzhou? New Zealand dairy cooperative Fonterra is hoping so, as it tries out its Tip Top ice cream in the Chinese market through Chinese e-commerce site Tmall.

The company cites research from Mintel that shows the total market value for ice cream sales in China increased by 90% between 2008 and 2014 to reach $11.4bn.

The take-home ice cream segment, which Tip Top is targeting, remains a relatively small part of the overall category and Tip Top feels there is plenty of room to grow.

Flexible approach to sales

Taking a flexible “trial and learn” approach using e-commerce will help Tip Top test the brand and products and be ready to capture future growth, Kim Ballinger, director Tip Top, said.

“China is Fonterra’s biggest market and this trial is a small way we can add to our offering there. There will be a lot to learn from this trial program,”​ Ballinger said. 

“We know the brand, sales platforms and product formats will need to evolve to suit consumers’ changing needs. But it is critical to get into the take-home segment early, get our systems up and running and learn what consumers want so we can quickly capture opportunities as they emerge.”

Tip Top will initially launch a 2L tub range, and is considering offering novelty sticks and bulk scoop products. Chinese consumers will be able to order six flavors: Vanilla, Chocolate, Hokey Pokey, Cookies and Cream, Neapolitan, and Strawberry.

Distribution will be handled by frozen products distributor Zhuhai Ice Technology.

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