Dongwon seeks growth with dried seaweed

Seaweed and laver are not considered as food by many people across the world.

When it comes to typical side dish on the Korean table, many people would come up with kimchi first. However, things are different in Korea and Japan. There another side dish which is second famous following kimchi. It’s seasoned “gim,” a type of laver, or dried seaweed…

While eating the staple of steamed rice, for example, Koreans wrap it with dried crispy seaweed. Seasoned with the right amount of salt and sesame oil, they are perfect side dishes satisfying Koreans.

As far as the products gim is concerned, Dongwon F&B is second to none here and extends its presence beyond the country’s boundary.

Spearheaded by its 28-year-old gim brand “Yangban,” Dongwon F&B is boasting around 8 percent of steady sales growth in duty free shops for seasoned seaweed for the last three years to post 3.5 billion won in sales.

The Seoul-based company, the food and beverage arm of the Dongwon Group, aims to remain ahead of the curve this year in the overseas market. The company is planning to increase its presence in Japan, Thailand and China so that it could achieve its ultimate goal to boast its brand as the country’s symbol by posting 10 billion won in sales in exports by this year.

After starting exports to Japan back in 1994, the entity also made its presence in the American market recently. It released three kinds of dried seaweed products in 2011, whose English name is “Sea Veggies” in the United States and Canada, making a huge success in its introduction. It introduced it in Kroger Company’s 2,700 outlets from the head of this year.

Backed by the momentum, Dongwon F&B plans to sell their product in supermarkets in the U.S. such as Walmart and SuperValu sooner or later so that American customers can enjoy their products anytime anywhere.

Backed by those successes in overseas market, the company is expanding its market into various countries by making local tasting food by integrating locally preferred tastes such as black pepper tasting, chilly for the U.S.

Dongwon F&B spokesman said that the outfit will seek innovation to remain ahead of the pack in the existing markets while creating new local taste abroad.

“Based on our best efforts we paid in the past for the product, we will be determined to make new products which could be preferred by local customers,” the spokesman said.

 

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