FOLLOWING the success of her fruit drink brand in the country, entrepreneur Catherine Salimbangon plans to expand distribution in two of Asia’s most promising markets for healthy products—Japan and Korea.
Salimbangon, Organique Inc. vice president, said her firm would sell at least 5,000 bottles of the Acai Berry fruit drink a month in the country.
talks with partners
“I’m already in talks with partners in these countries who are very interested with the products. They told me Japanese and Koreans are already using Acai fruit extracts in their cosmetics also so there really is a good potential for my product to be well accepted there,” said Salimbangon.
Salimbangon said she and her husband decided to invest on the imported fruit drink because it is already widely known globally for it’s antioxidant properties.
“The Acai Berry is a wild berry in the Amazon rainforest in Brazil that was first exported from Brazil in 2000 because of its antioxidant property, it has become one of the most sought after health product ingredient in the world,” said Salimbangon.
organique set up
In January of 2008, Organíque, Inc. was established with their headquarters based in Ortigas Center, Pasig City. The products are manufactured in the US using the couple’s own mixture and sent to the country already in bottles ready for distribution.
To sustain the expansion, Salimbangon has partnered with a new co-packer in the US which is also doing co-packing jobs for other major companies in the world.
Salimbangon said for a start she would order 26,000 bottles from the co-packer at least three times a year for the Korea and Japan expansion.
While they also carry other product lines under the brand like the Acai Soap, they want to focus on the juice drink first and strengthen the brand in the two countries before they will introduce more product lines.
Salimbangon said Korea and Japan were the choices for expansion because Acai Berry was a popular ingredient in health and beauty products in these countries.
Based on a survey done by Korea Slimming Corporation in 2010 for an Acai Berry Slimming Tea product imported from Brazil, about 20,000 Koreans surveyed using the product found it effective and has been using the product for at least two years already.
“The same is happening in Japan where people already use Acai Berry as ingredients in their cosmetics because it also has anti-aging properties,” said Salimbangon.