Market Information   >   Food News Clipping

Food News Clipping

March 22- 25, 2021


FAS/Seoul Monitoring of Media Reporting on Agricultural Issues

Today's Date: Friday, March 26, 2021

For Coverage: March  22 ~  25, 2021


Korean Food Processors Expand Environment-Friendly Packaging 

Summary: Leading food processors in Korea are switching to environment-friendly packaging.  According to research by a leading food processor Pulmuwon, plastic consumption in Korea was 146 kilograms per capita in 2020, much higher than the United States (100 kilograms), China (73 kilograms), and Japan (72 kilograms).  Pulmuwon recently introduced 'Bio-PET' packaging in its salad products, which is made from sugar cane and biodegradable.  Dongwon F&B replaced chemical coolant with frozen water in its home-delivery chilled food boxes.  Binggre revised its packaging design to use less plastic and materials to incorporate 35 percent recycled plastic.  Lotte Chilsung introduced bottled water without plastic labels. 


Pulmuwon Declares it will Become 'Plant-oriented Food Frontier' 

Summary: Pulmuwon, a leading food processor in South Korea, announced on March 24 that it will realign its business to become a 'plant-oriented food frontier' in the global market.  Pulmuwon said that the initiative is to meet increased consumer demand for environment-friendly, plant-based processed foods.  Pulmuwon will launch 20 new products this year under the initiative, including plant-based meat alternatives, plant-based protein foods, and plant-based low-carb foods. 


Salad Has Become a Staple, and the Veggie Market is Worth $885 Million 

Summary: KREI announced that the domestic market for fresh vegetable and fruits hit 1 trillion won ($885 million) in 2020, while growing 20% each year since 2010.  Despite limits on eating in restaurants, demand for salad is rapidly increasing on both online and offline platforms.  Salad sales at a leading retail ‘Emart’ increased by 20.4% in 2020, and ‘DongWon’ launched new salad places this year.  Salad used to be considered as a diet food but now it has become a staple and targeting wider audience.  It also reflects recent HMR and Health Functional Food trends. 


Sales of Protein Foods Up 578% in 2020, GS25 Convenience Store 

Summary: GS25, a leading convenience store chain in South Korea, reported that its sales of protein foods increased 578 percent in 2020 from the previous year.  The number of protein foods (including beverages, bars, powders, and salads) offered in GS25 stores more than doubled during the year to 34 to meet increased consumer demand and interest.  GS25 said that consumers opted for home training and exercise during the COVID-19 pandemic and increased purchases of protein foods. 


OB Beer Increases Prices 1.36% from April 1 

Summary: OB Beer, a leading large-scale brewery in South Korea, announced that its ex-brewery prices will increase 1.36 percent on average from April 1.  OB Beer explained that the price increase was due to the higher liquor tax this year.  Other breweries will likely follow and increase their prices too.  The liquor tax on beer is adjusted each year based on the shift in consumer prices the previous year. 


107th HPAI Outbreak Reported in Junranam Province 

Summary: The Avian Influenza Management Center under the Korean government reported that a duck farm in Junranam province tested positive for H5N8 type high-pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) on March 22.  It was the 107th HPAI outbreak reported in the country since last November. 


Since the Acquisition of 'Schwans', CJ CheilJedang's Food Sales in the U.S. Increased 10 Times in Two Years 

Summary: CJ CheilJedang plans to reach 6 trillion Korean won ($5.4 billion) in food sales in the United States by 2025.  It plans to achieve this by strengthening collaboration with the frozen food company Schwans it acquired in 2019.  In 2018, just before the acquisition of Schwans, overseas sales only accounted for 14 percent of CJ CheilJedang's total food sales.  In 2020 overseas sales accounted for 46 percent (about 9 trillion won) of its total food sales, a large increase.  Just two years after the acquisition, CJ CheilJedang's US food sales increased almost 10 times from 365 billion Korean won ($323 million) in 2018 to 3.3 trillion Korean won ($2.95 billion) last year. 


30% of Korean Families Live with Pet Animals, Up from 25% in 2018 

Summary: KB Economic Institute reported on March 21 outcomes of its pet market survey administered in December 2020.  According to the report, 29.7 percent of Korean families live with pet animals as of December 2020, a significant increase from 25.1 percent in 2018.  Dogs (80.7 percent or 5.8 million in number) were the leading pet animal in Korean families, followed by cats (25.7 percent or 2.1 million in number), fish (8.8 percent), and hamsters (3.7 percent).  Korean families spend 140,000 won ($122 USD) in expenses for their pet animals a month on average, up 20,000 won ($17 USD) from 2018.  Pet food (33.4 percent) was the leading pet animal expense, followed by snacks (17.8 percent). 


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