Viet Nam News
By Thiên Lý
HCM CITY – In late September, Masan, one of Việt Nam’s largest private-sector companies, and its strategic partner, the Thai conglomerate Singha Group, officially introduced its new product, Chin-Su Yod Thong fish sauce, to Thailand.
Masan’s launch of the Chin-Su Yod Thong fish sauce in the Thai market is considered by market experts to be an audacious step since Thailand is a traditional fish sauce market which exports several kinds of fish sauce products to many countries around the world.
In addition, this market is dominated by three famous local fish sauce brands, namely Tiparos, Plamuek and Magachef, which attract up to 90 per cent of the local Thai consumers.
Meanwhile, the local press says that Masan, by selling a Vietnamese product in Thailand, is attempting to reverse a trend that has seen dozens of major Thai companies with hundreds of products flood the Vietnamese market.
The significant thing is that Masan is not simply exporting its existing fish sauce products to Thailand, but the company has produced a new product for this market.
Despite having spent only seven months to produce the Chin-Su Yod Thong fish sauce for the Thai market, Masan is proud of this product and believes that with this product the company will be able not only to dominate the Thai market within three years, but also reach out to 250 million people in the ASEAN market in the near future.
Seokhee Won, CEO of Masan Consumer Corporation and deputy CEO of Masan Group, said “Chin-Su Yod Thong is the first step in Masan’s journey to globally spread Eastern cuisine culture to ASEAN consumers through the fish sauce taste.”
Keys to success
What makes Seokhee Won optimistic about the future of the Chin-Su Yod Thong fish sauce in particular and Vietnamese fish sauce in general in oversea markets, including Thailand?
“Nước Mắm”, “Nampla”, “Ngan bya yay”, “prahok” or “padek” is an essential condiment that is consumed with daily meals by the people of Việt Nam, Thailand, Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos. Việt Nam and Thailand are globally recognised as the cradle of fish sauce, where it was created and gradually perfected.
Meanwhile, Masan is one of the most successful producers of fish sauce in Việt Nam with nearly 50 million families in the country using the company’s fish sauce products.
It is this success that has encouraged Masan to realise its dream of reaching out to overseas markets, and Thailand is the first destination.
To conquer this market, Masan has opted to produce a fish sauce product especially for the Thai market in order to provide Thai consumers with a high quality fish sauce product suitable to their palates.
Lê Thị Nga, CEO of Masan, said, “We have made serious studies on Thai people’s popular dishes, the history as well as the role of the fish sauce in Thai food, and the way the Thai people use fish sauce for cooking their dishes. We have also lived and worked together with Thai cooks in restaurants and also street eateries.”
“As a result, we created a total of 50 fish sauce samples which allowed us to choose the most suitable sample to develop a new fish sauce product that is really favoured by the Thai people. It is Chin-Su Yod Thong,” Nga said.
Another advantage that must be mentioned in Masan’s journey to conquer the Thai fish sauce market is Singha Group’s assistance through Thai Cuisine experts and its large and powerful staff of skilled marketing employees that enabled Masan to introduce its fish sauce directly to Thai consumers.
How do Thai people accept the Chin-Su Yod Thong fish sauce?
This fish sauce product was tested by more than 1,000 Thai people including consumers and cooks in Thailand, 95 per cent of which said they loved and wanted to buy this product. Seventy five per cent said that they were ready to use Chin-Su Yod Thong to replace the fish sauce products they were using, according to a survey made by Thailand’s Milk and Cream Market Research Company.
“Our purpose is always to improve the material and spiritual life of Vietnamese consumers with products that are branded and recognised thanks to their high quality, deliciousness and convenience. This motto is also applied to Thai consumers,” said Seokhee Won.
The presence of Singha, which has a strong reputation built over many decades with Thai consumers, in the development of Vietnamese fish sauce will be an important advantage for Masan to realise its aspiration to reach the wider ASEAN market, he said.
The Chin-Su Yod Thong fish sauce is produced by modern production lines in Masan’s facilities in Việt Nam. It not only satisfies the palate of Thai people, but also Thailand’s government standards.VNS