A Korean drink that Taiwan eats sweetly … The secret to 800% rapid growth.

picture explanationConsumers buying Milkis at Costco’s Taoyuan Nankan store in Taiwan. [사진 제공 = 롯데칠성음료]

Lotte Chilsung Beverage’s milky soda drink is emerging as a global mega brand. Following Russia, China and the United States, the annual sales volume exceeded 10 million cans in Taiwan. The aim is to launch zero calorie Milkis next year and strengthen marketing to make Milkis a global success following the fruit soju brand Sunhari.

Lotte Chilsung Beverage announced on the 19th that the sales volume of Milkis in Taiwan from January to August this year increased by about 810% compared to the same period the previous year, more than 10 million cans (based on 250 ml). It has been about three years since we entered Taiwan in the second half of 2020. At that time, 200,000 cans of milk kisses were exported, and in 2021, it recorded 2.3 million cans. More than 15 million cans are expected to be exported this year. By the end of the year, more than half of the 24 million people in Taiwan will be drinking milkshakes.

Lotte Chilsung Beverage said, “Given the low unit price of food and beverage products, we set annual sales of 10 billion won with one brand as a standard for hit products.” The sale can be considered to have achieved approximately 10 billion won in sales,” he explained.

The company explained that in Taiwan, Milkis captured local consumers by promoting the image of a healthy and soft soda with milk. It has expanded its points of contact with consumers by promoting it in collaboration with Taiwanese influencers, communicating using social networking services (SNS) such as Line and Facebook, and conducting review marketing through consumer experience. As Korean dramas like ‘Twenty-Five Twenty One’ and ‘Strange Lawyer Woo Young-Woo’ became very popular in Taiwan, I also saw an increase in curiosity and liking for Korean food and drinks.

The channel was also quickly expanded so that this increased brand awareness could lead to purchases. Currently, Milkys is sold in all 14 Taiwanese stores of ‘Costco’, a large discount market, and more than 1,000 stores of ‘PX Mart,’ the largest local supermarket chain.

Taiwan is the fourth country to surpass 10 million cans of Milkys sales after Russia, China and the United States. In the case of Russia, sales expanded mainly in the cold Far East, surpassing 10 million cans per year for the first time in the early 1990s. The image of being healthy because it contained milk captured the taste buds of local people. In addition, unlike Korea, which focuses on original flavors, it has launched a fruit-flavored Milkis product by attacking the fact that fruit is not easily sourced due to the nature of the cold region. In Russia, there are a total of 7 types of Dairy, including original, strawberry, banana, melon, grape, peach, and mango, and it is currently expanding its sales channels to the west of Moscow beyond’ r Far East.

Popularity in China was mainly driven by favorable sentiments for Korean products. It achieved 10 million cans for the first time in 2015, and sales reached 25 million cans last year. This is the highest ever since it entered China in the 1990s. The popularity of Korean products has increased, and as the brand is strengthened through the use of SNS, it has quickly gained popularity throughout China.

Currently, it is expanding its presence in new distribution channels such as supermarkets, as well as in various restaurants and business channels by pairing food with spicy foods such as hot peppers. In the United States, it is becoming increasingly popular among Asian people through Asian Mart, and sold more than 10 million cans in 2020.

Lotte Chilsung Beverage cites ‘distinctive taste’ as the reason for Milkis’ success. The carbonated category, the largest in the global beverage market, is divided into cola and non-cola, because milk-flavored carbonated products are unfamiliar to consumers worldwide among non-cola categories. A Lotte Chilsung Beverage official said, “We plan to cultivate Laethog as a global mega brand along with Sunhari of alcoholic beverages in the future.”

[진영화 기자]
[ⓒ 매일경제 & mk.co.kr, 무단전재 및 재배포 금지]

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