China focus: See new developments from Watsons, Yili, Garden of Life, Fonterra

By Tingmin Koe

- Last updated on GMT

The flag of China. ©Getty Images
The flag of China. ©Getty Images

Related tags Watsons Yili Garden of Life Fonterra

This round-up will look at the latest developments in China’s health and nutrition sector, including updates from Watsons, Yili, Garden of Life, and Fonterra.
Insights for brands: Watsons China establishes new centre to gather consumer data

Watsons China has established a brand centre which uses multiple offline plus online (O+O) touchpoints, such as its store outlets and Enterprise Wechat, to gather consumer insights for partnering health and nutrition brands.

Known as the OPTIMO Brand Centre, the centre is targeted at helping supplier brands respond to customers’ needs, and in turn, grow their market share.

“We will leverage online touchpoints like Enterprise Wechat to conduct surveys or launch video interviews to help supplier brands understand their target customers’ preference, shopping behaviour and pain points so that they can better design their marketing plans when they launch a new product,” ​Kulvinder Birring, CEO of Watsons China told NutraIngredients-Asia.

Rapid innovation: Accelerated NPD strategy reaps rewards for Chinese dairy giant Yili

Yili has registered record growth and increased market share in its recently released H1FY2022 financial report.

Total revenue rose 12.3 per cent year-on-year to hit RMB$63.5bn (US$9.2bn), while profits rose 15.4 per cent year-on-year to RMB$6.1bn (US$890mn).

The firm attributed the success to the sales of its value-added dairy products, as well as its efforts in speeding up new product innovation.

Profits drop: Slump in gross margins for major Chinese infant formula players in first six months of 2022

Key players in China’s infant formula industry have reported a drop in their gross profit margins in the first six months of this year, including the biggest local player Feihe, Health and Happiness Group (H&H Group), and Ausnutria.

The three companies, which are all listed in Hong Kong Exchanges (HKEX), have pointed out the above in their most recent financial reports for the first six months of this year.

Some of the reasons include a drop in product revenue and rising material costs.

‘Specific Chinese needs’: Nestle’s Garden of Life launches two new probiotics for kids’ growth and immune health

Nestle Health Science’s probiotics brand Garden of Life has launched two new probiotics targeted at kids’ growth and immune health on China’s offline retail market.

The probiotic strains in the products include Lacticaseibacillus rhamnosus ​GG, Lacticaseibacillus rhamnosus ​HN001, Bifidobacterium animalis ​BB-12, and Bifidobacterium lactis ​HN019.

Both new products, which come in the form of solid beverages​, are sold as general foods. 

Fonterra eyes booming wellbeing and medical nutrition markets in China, SEA with new portfolio

The wellbeing and medical nutrition sectors are booming in China and South East Asia (SEA), says New Zealand dairy giant Fonterra, which has introduced a new portfolio aimed at tackling these needs.

Known as Nutiani, the business-to-business brand focuses on the physical, inner, and mental wellbeing sectors, which Fonterra said were growing at six per cent per year and worth US$66bn, citing statistics from Euromonitor.

Within Asia-Pacific, the company sees the biggest opportunities for Nutiani in China and South East Asia, said chief innovation and brand officer Komal Mistry-Mehta.

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