Some interesting facts about the Vietnamese confectionery market
The confectionery revenue in Vietnam has increased rapidly, reaching $7.81 billion in 2022 (according to Statista).
The Vietnamese market imports nearly 50 million USD of confectionery and cereals from 11 countries. Especially in 2019, Vietnam imported $360.6 million of confectionery.
Meanwhile, confectionery products have a revenue growth reaching 15% per year and are still expected to grow annually by 10.78%.
One Vietnamese person, in particular, ate 6.3 kg of sugary confections in 2021. In the meanwhile, each person consumed 1.3 kg of ice cream, 1.9 kilograms of preserved pastries & cakes, and 0.9 kg of chocolate treats consumed per capita.
The consumption of this kind of product is predicted to rise to 11kg/ person/ year in 2022 (Statista) – because of the young population and the increase in the income of Vietnamese.
In short, these things reveal the attraction of the Vietnamese confectionery industry for local and foreign businesses.
Competitors in The Vietnamese Confectionery Industry
In an attractive market like Vietnam, there are some notable competitors that you should consider before entering the market.
There are well-known brands in the nation such as Kinh Do with a market share of (19%), Huu Nghi (5%), Bibica (4%), and Hai Ha (3%), which together account for a total market share of 31%.
That means the domestic market still left up to 20% of the 7.81 dollars billion-dollar industry for foreign confectionary brands in the Vietnamese market.
This includes international brands in the region such as Orion, Liwayway, Meiji, Nestle, and Perfetti Van Melle (Alpenliebe, Chupa Chups), etc.
In terms of top imported countries, Vietnam’s suppliers mostly come from Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, China, and South Korea.
The price range for both domestic and foreign confectionery is quite diverse for different customer segments. Here is the list below:
Besides from the best-seller candies above, there are also some other popular candies in Vietnam
- Play More Candy (Thailand): $0.91 – $1.21 / jar of 22g
- Oishi Fruit Candy (Vietnam): $0.25 – $0.26 / pack of 90gr
- Anytime Candy – Lotte (Korea): $1.06 – $1.42 / pack of 60gr
- Daedong Vitamin Red Ginseng Soft Candy (Korea): $0.86 – $1.21 / pack of 200gr
- Lotte Lollipop (Korea): $0.17 – $0.26 / stick
Besides from the best-seller chocolate above, here are some other popular chocolate brands in Vietnam
- Ferrero Rocher (US): $6.90 – pack of 48 tablets
- Hershey Nuggets (US): $0.95 – 28gr, $1.68 – 56gr, or $7.12 – 286gr, etc
- Meiji’s Dark Chocolate (Japan): $1.8 – 50gr, or $4.66 – 120gr
Fascinating Facts about Vietnamese Consumers and Features of Confectionery That Attract Them
Some Highlight Insight of Vietnamese Demographic
The middle class in Vietnam, which is made up 40% of the total population in 2021, has the highest growth rate in ASEAN.
In the same year, it was discovered that above half of the population was less than 35 years old, showing the young population in Vietnam.
Interestingly, people who were 25 to 34 years old consumed the highest amount of confectionery.
Moreover, females were more active than males in the role of confectionery customers (58.4%) and people bought these products mostly in offline sale channels, such as supermarkets, convenience stores, groceries, etc.
Regarding the product feature that drives Vietnamese customers to take action, here are some insights you should know before entering to the market
Health concerns and nutritional needs
There is rising awareness of health among Vietnamese consumers, so they prefer lower sugar intake, health benefits, and nutritious, high-quality confectionery products.
Annually, low-sugar items have an increased rate reaching more than 8%/ year.
Products having extraordinary attributes such as calcium, minerals, vitamins, micronutrients, low levels of cholesterol, and full of nutrients elements (oats, nuts, matcha, etc) will attract the eyes of health-concern customers.
Needs of relieving stress
Snacking is a form of stress relief, especially when eating sweets.
During the Covid 19 epidemic in 2020, the need to use confectionery products to relieve boredom during the isolation period increased significantly.
Curiosity of products
With the mentality of trying new and strange things, Vietnamese people have concerns about confectionery products that are eye-catching displayed or tried in stores.
Reviews on social networking sites are also an effective way to stimulate consumer curiosity owing to the habit of using the Internet in Vietnam (nearly 7 hours/day).
To satisfy their curiosity, they will search for informational products or buy products immediately.
Confectionery as gifts
Vietnamese customers often give gifts and confectionery on occasions such as holidays, Tet, birthdays, gifts for gratitude, thanks, etc.
Especially on Tet Holiday, Valentine’s Day, birthdays, festivals, company openings, shops, confectionery is completely utilised.
Confectionery is carefully and beautifully wrapped in gift baskets to show respect to the recipient. It is also packaged with wines and drinks to increase the gift value on the Tet Holiday.
Not only the quality of ingredients but also the delicious taste that Vietnamese consumers expect when looking for candy, chocolate, or gum in the market.
In addition to putting hundreds of high-quality and nutritious ingredients, taste is an important factor that producers need to consider.
Confectionery Products Distribution in Vietnam
At the moment most foreign brands enter the Vietnamese confectionery market in two ways:
- Indirect Export
An indirect export is a form of selling goods and services of a company to a foreign country through intermediaries (through third persons called middlemen).
The items had to pass through many intermediates’ hands and be in charge by their commission, which leads to a significant increase in the product’s price.
- Hand goods
Selling “hand-carried goods” is a popular form of business in Vietnam but illegal, if the seller does not meet all import conditions, stamps, and papers and pays all taxes and fees as prescribed, the business owner will have a fine.
Entering the confectionery market in Vietnam successfully for SME
Though Vietnam has many confectionery brands in the market, the demand for products is still rising annually, which creates more opportunities and places for new businesses to fulfil and meet the market’s gap.
To win customers’ hearts, foreign confectionery brands have to understand the Vietnamese consumers, their favourite tastes, and the market trends.
Vietnamese customers are curious and love to try new things and use them as special gifts for their family and friends.
Therefore, instead of creating some boring, regular products with lower prices, creating outstanding products with special features would be a big plus when entering the Vietnamese market.
In this way, SME(small medium enterprise) brands can easily find a niche market of their own in the 7.81 billion dollar industry.
However, it is easier said than done, to understand the market, know the consumers, and identify the niche market in Vietnam.
The SMEs need to have an experienced Vietnamese import-export advisory, who knows the market for better guidance.
In addition to the special features, a reasonable price is also another factor that decides whether an SME enters the market successfully or not.
This problem can be very complicated when it comes to import and export activities, as your products will go through many layers, and add up the cost, while the product’s value stays the same.
At this moment most of the confectionery products are imported to Vietnam via an indirect export model, which adds up to about 150-200% of the retail prices when it comes to the end customers.
To solve this problem in the easiest way, nowadays, SMEs can use direct export services to enter the Vietnam market, with no middlemen and extravagant costs when it comes to the Vietnamese market.
As a result, it will make the price more competitive in the market. No more complicated process with middlemen or extravagant costs.
To sum up, the Vietnamese confectionery industry is an attractive market for international players to penetrate. Despite well-known domestic companies, there are still many potential places for foreign confectionery businesses as long as they know clearly about Vietnamese consumers’ features, identify their niche market and have products’ competitive prices.