HA NOI — The confectionery market this Tet (Lunar New Year) is witnessing a break-through step of domestic products that occupy 90 per cent of market shares in supermarkets nationwide.
|Customers buy confectionery and sweet dried fruit for the upcoming Tet holiday. Domestic confectionery makes up 90 per cent of the market share in supermarkets nationwide. — VNA/VNS Photo Nguyen Thuy
According to a Viet Nam News reporter, it has been so difficult to find imported confectionery in supermarkets this year.
In Big C, most confectionery shelves are full of domestic brands, such as Bibica, Hai Ha and Kinh Do.
A staff at Big C said that foreign candy and cakes accounted for only 10 per cent of their total volume this Tet. They mostly were chocolate and fruit-based candy.
An official from Citimart Binh Thanh in HCM City also informed that most confectionery products at his supermarket were domestically produced. Only a small volume of this commodity was imported from Indonesia, Malaysia and Denmark.
Domestic confectionery products make up the majority of not only supermarkets, but also retail shops.
Vu Binh Lien, owner of a retail shop on Nguyen Sieu Street in Ha Noi, said that this year consumers preferred domestic products for their design and quality.
"When the design is eye-catching, the products are easy to sell," she said.
According to retailers and supermarkets, domestic producers have a greater understanding of consumers' hobbies, so they invest in design and quality.
Cheaper prices also help the attractiveness of domestic products.
While the price of imported confectionery products increases by 30 per cent this year, the price on the domestic front increases by 20 per cent.
Moreover, due to the high foreign-exchange rate, traders say that prices of foreign confectionery would be 5-10 per cent higher than that of domestic products.
To serve consumers, companies have strengthened their production.
For example, Kinh Do Company brings a volume of 3,200 tonnes of confection to the market this Tet, a year-on-year increase on 15 per cent. These products will be sold at the company's 120,000 distributions places.
Meanwhile, Bibica produces 5,000 tonnes, up by 15 per cent over the same period last year.
High consumption of domestic confectionery products proves that Vietnamese consumers prefer domestic projects, which has encouraged domestic companies to invest more to their production and technologies.
Low quality products
Goods of low quality, unknown origin and no expiration date are flooding HCM City markets, a usual occurrence as the Tet (Lunar New Year) festival approaches, the Sai Gon Giai Phong (Liberated Sai Gon) newspaper reported yesterday.
On Monday, inspection team 2B of the HCM City Market Watch Department found more than 4 tonnes of mut hat sen (sugar-preserved lotus seeds) being made in unhygienic conditions at a facility on 621 Pham Van Chi Street in District 6.
The lotus seeds gave out a nasty smell and most of the materials used for mut (preserved fruit) at this facility were put into packaging that had formerly contained chemicals and animal feed, the team said.
Team 2B also found out three barrels containing industrial chemicals that were being used to process mut hat sen. It also confiscated more than 4 tonnes of mut trai cay (preserved fruit) without origins, labels and expiration dates.
Last month, the city Market Watch Department had discovered and confiscated hundreds of mut kiwi, nho kho (raisin), and tran bi (dried tangerine) in packaging that had Chinese characters on them.
Apart from confectionery, many kinds of wine without clear origin labels are also to be found in the market.
Dang Van Duc, head of the HCM City Market Watch Department, said in just the past three weeks, the department confiscated hundreds of bottles of Chivas Regal, Remy Martin, and several vodka brands without receipt and labels of origin.
Meanwhile, the Sai Gon Giai Phong newspaper reported that some small facilities have imported Chinese products and repacked them with Vietnamese labels to sell in the market.
In the Binh Tay Market, for instance, many China-originated confectionery cartons were being sold to consumers as locally-made items. The owner of a processing facility in District 6 said that because these products were seasonal, it was not feasible to invest in production facilities. It was cheaper to import them from China, he said.
The city Market Watch Department also said that traders and producers were using more sophisticated tricks to swindle relevant agencies and consumers. It took weeks for agencies to discover some violations, department officials said.
Duc warned that low quality and fake confectionery products were harmful to humans because most of them were processed using industrial chemicals.
The officials advised consumers to be cautious with imported confectionery because, in recent times, a lot of products have been found with no receipts. Most of the low quality products had been sourced from China, Duc said. —VNS