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Food News Clipping

April 19 - 23, 2021


FAS/Seoul Monitoring of Media Reporting on Agricultural Issues

Today's Date: Friday, April 23, 2021

For Coverage: April 19 ~  23, 2021


27.7% of Korean Families Have Pet Animals, MAFRA 

Summary: The Korea Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affaires (MAFRA) reported on April 22 that its national survey in October 2020 found that 27.7 percent of Korean families (6.4 million families) had pets at home, half million families more than the previous year.  Dogs were the leading animals kept as pets by Korean families (81.6 percent), followed by cats (28.6 percent). 


CJ to Stop Using Soybeans from Amazon Region … an ESG Initiative 

Summary: CJ Cheiljedang, the leading food-feed processor in South Korea, announced on April 21 that it would not purchase soybeans from the Amazon region anymore to help preserve forests in the region.  Cheiljedang was going to purchase 400,000 metric tons of soybeans from the region this year, which accounts for 23.5 percent of CJ's annual soybean purchases


MOTIE Makes K-ESG Indicators 

Summary: The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy (MOTIE) announced that it will develop Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) indicators in collaboration with domestic corporations such as Samsung, Hyundai, LG, SK, and CJ.  At the meeting on April 21, they drafted guidelines and agreed on the necessity of addressing ESG indicators considering Korea’s industrial environment.  The final ESG indicators are expected in the second half of the year. 


Korean Food Manufacturing and Food Service Industries Spurring ESG Management 

Summary: Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) has been emerging as the major topic within Korean food companies.  April 22 is Earth Day, and many Korean food companies are attracting attention from consumers through various 'environment-friendly' activities.  CJ Selecta, a Brazilian concentrated soy protein producer under CJ CheilJedang, announced “deforestation-free production to minimize deforestation in the Amazon.  The main aim is to pursue ESG management starting from raw materials by preventing the destruction of the ecosystem caused by over logging and soybean farming on milpa.  According to the 'Stop Deforestation' declaration, CJ plans to purchase about 400,000 tons of soybeans from places other than Amazon forest areas by the year 2025.  The amount equals 25% of the 1.7 million tons of soybean that CJ CheilJedang buys for its annual food and bio business. 

MAFRA Hosts Stake-holder Meetings in Preparation for the UN Food Summit 2021 

Summary: The Korea Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (MAFRA) announced that it will host a second public hearing meeting on April 21 in preparation for the upcoming UN Food Summit, September 2021.  MAFRA said that the meeting will invite representatives from local farmers, marketers, academics, and consumers for an open discussion on potential Korean government policies to cope with the United Nation's sustainability initiative.  MAFRA said that there will be two additional public hearing meetings in May. 


EMART Offers Bread-based Prepared Foods as Consumers Want to Diversify Home Meal Options 

Summary: EMART, the leading hypermarket grocery store chain in South Korea, launched an in-store promotion on bread-based prepared foods on April 18.  EMART explained that an increased number of consumers were interested in diversifying their rice-based daily diet as they were required to stay and dine more at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 


Two out of Five Korean Adults Practice "COVID-19 Revenge Shopping" 

Summary: According to a survey of 3,000 Korean adults by Saramin, 38 percent of the respondents replied that they experienced "COVID-19 revenge shopping" to deal with mental stresses caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.  Younger adults showed higher ratios of revenge shopping (46 percent among people in their twenties versus 18 percent among those in their fifties).  Consumers also said that their shopping patterns changed during the COVID-19 pandemic to focus more on value-oriented products (34 percent), mental-satisfactions (31 percent), personal lifestyle and initiatives (31 percent), and safe and healthy products (25 percent). 


Korean Department Store Chains Report Strong Sales Growth in Spring Promotions 

Summary: Leading Korean department store chains, Lotte, Shinsegae, and Hyundai, reported strong sales growth from spring promotions during the first two weeks in April.  Lotte Department Store reported 40 percent sales growth in the spring promotion compared to the same season promotion last year.  Luxury goods (65 percent growth) and fashion goods (40 percent) led the sales growth in Lotte.  Shinsegae Department Store and Hyundai Department Store also reported 51 percent and 44 percent growth in the spring promotion respectively.  Shinsegae and Hyundai reported that luxury and fashion goods led the strong growth in sales.



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