4 Bites into the world of Food product branding for Asia

29 Mar, 2018

Base Creative has worked with a range of USA, European and Asian FMCG brands looking to expand market share and enter new markets. These are some of the trends and insights discovered that are key to a successful strategy in the Asian market.

01 Food made with Love, and Transparency is Crucial
While production in the food and beverage market is often quantity and quota driven, insights show that quality and care in production ¬food that is made with love and care is increasingly becoming the differentiation point. Wellness is perhaps the biggest trend globally right now, ¬and is changing the way customers select products. Transparency and giving customers a way to peek into the kitchen to see how the food they eat is made, as well as having accountability throughout the supply chain, is essential.
In a hyper-aware food culture like Singapore, Japan and Hong Kong, attention to quality plays an even more crucial role to success.
Base Creative worked with gourmet food delivery and premium Manuka honey brand, to provide just that - creating the brands from the ground up, with a new set of values aimed at a fresh customer mindset, a range of compelling touch points were then developed to activate the brands across a range of channels.


02 Need for Nutrition
Health focused trends in the industry have made nutritional and organic labeled food products imperative to profit. In a recent industry poll on snack purchasing factors, keywords such as “healthfulness”, “nutritious”, “not processed”, and “natural” were all important or extremely important to the consumer. But beyond that, customers are seeking functional aspects to their foods¬ with many examples that are already in the market - chocolate that benefits the heart and blueberry muesli that helps support healthy eyesight.
Creating brand claims for food products requires a very careful balancing act of wordplay. For example, in New Zealand, regulations stipulate that Manuka honey brands cannot claim any health benefits on their packaging, ¬even though their anti-bacterial properties have been shown in numerous scientific studies. Therefore, words like “supporting wellness” are as close to the edge as the brands can get.
03 Downsizing and the Power of Package Portioning
In the continuation of the healthy lifestyle ideal - packaging is downsizing and a shift to smaller pack sizes is proving to be the more desirable option for packaging volume. Consumer’s mindfulness on subjects of weight watching and intentional healthy living is behind this movement in buying smaller quantities. It is also supported by several government initiatives to address national health concerns, like diabetes and obesity. In recent work, Base Creative partnered with Fuelify for the sole purpose of combining fitness and food - proving that well-being and self betterment transcends from food to action. Not only does the product promote healthy lifestyles, but it shows that smaller-sized fitness food is perfect for consumers on-the-go.
04 Sustainable Seal the Deal
Another aspect of healthy living is translated into the human impact on nature and the environment. The island of plastic in the South Pacific Ocean, which is the size of Texas, is in the news weekly. This idea impacts the look, feel, material and design of food packaging. Recyclable materials are highly popular and re-sealable options appeal to both environmental and portion controlling consumers. Re-sealable packaging has been the fastest growing packaging type for several food categories for numerous years now.
More and more eco-friendly and flexible packaging is being manufactured, and stands as a witness to this growing trend. Whilst not every customer does their part to reduce environmental destruction, they do expect that the brands they buy from do. We build these facets into the brands we create., for example, donates $US 1 to environmental charities for every pot of honey sold.


Matthew Kinsman