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#52016 - 22 May 07 14:45 JP/Candy business is tasty, thanks to the RI's sweet tooth
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Registered: 24 Apr 08
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Candy business is tasty, thanks to the RI's sweet tooth.

Debnath Guharoy, Consultant

Casinos and tollroads are highly rated by entrepreneurs as guaranteed money-makers, second only to the mint itself. Candy would probably come close, if you stop to ask yourself how much it could have actually cost to produce that popular little lozenge you're about to pop into your mouth.

There's evidence to suggest that regardless of cultures, people around the world tend to eat more sweets when times are hard or when they're feeling low. As products go, this is one inflation-proof category.

That's certainly true in Indonesia. Just about every product category felt the impact of consumers tightening their belts after the second fuel price hike in October 2005. Not candies, however. They simply continued their long march forward.

In fact, they attracted more users and continue to do so to this day. There are at least 85 million Indonesians above the age of 14 who frequently buy candy. Add tens of millions of children who eat sweets everyday and a clearer picture of Indonesia's money-making candy industry begins to emerge.

Hard candies continue to grow while the number of people buying soft candies and chewing gum has flattened. Across all three types of candies, half the consumers live in rural Indonesia. With direct distribution usually stopping at the smaller towns, most manufacturers of popular candies will find it difficult to accept this reality.

Another revelation that might shatter a popular myth is the fact that female buyers of candy outnumber the males by only a small margin. With 14-17 year olds and the over 50s accounting for 15 per cent of candy buyers, the rest are evenly spread in between.

These observations are based on Roy Morgan Single Source, Indonesia's largest syndicated survey now expanding to include over 27,000 respondents annually, projected to reflect 90 percent of the population over the age of 14.

Relaxa and Kopiko are the giants in hard candy, Mentos and Sugus dominate soft candy, and Yosan and Big Babol rule the chewing gum category. Then, there are all the other types of manufactured sweets, like chocolates and chocolate-coated wafers, not counting all the cakes and kue, ice cream, es kacang, and the like.

If memory serves me right, Silver Queen ruled the palate stakes two decades ago. If so, the balance of power in chocolates seems to have shifted in more recent times. Today, Beng-Beng leads with over 25 million buyers in the last four weeks. Chocolate coats are doing better than the real thing, no surprises there. Similarly, Walls has overcome Campina, with 11 million and 6 million buyers respectively.

The fascinating commonality between buyers of candies, chocolates and ice creams is their concern with weight. Across all three product categories, about half the buyers are either "always watching my weight", or "like to eat healthy food" or "always think of the calories", or "a low-fat diet is a way of life", or "would like to lose weight".

This weight-consciousness exists in a country where the overwhelming majority is doing very well on Body Mass Index, the universal height to weight ratio. Only a small fraction of Indonesia is, in fact, overweight, just 13 percent of the population above the age of 14.

Though these delights are consumed by all sections of society, it is Indonesia's middle class with household expenditure of between Rp 800,000 and Rp 2.25 million per month that accounts for over 60 percent of frequent buyers. That life is literally sweeter for people who are financially better off is another bitter truth for the underprivileged to swallow.

The writer can be contacted at Debnath.Guharoy@roymorgan.com
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#52066 - 23 May 07 08:08 Re: JP/Candy business is tasty, thanks to the RI's sweet tooth [Re: KuKuKaChu]
Dilli Offline
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Registered: 26 Feb 06
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Thats why there is a "Doktor Gigi" on evry corner....
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#52068 - 23 May 07 08:32 Re: JP/Candy business is tasty, thanks to the RI's sweet tooth [Re: Dilli]
KuKuKaChu Moderator Offline
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Registered: 09 Oct 05
Posts: 10790
Loc: Centre of the Universe
Quoting: Dilli
Thats why there is a "Doktor Gigi" on evry corner....

yes, and why the rate of diabetes amongst Indonesians is the highest in the world, and one of the leading causes of death here. Many coronary related deaths are in fact the result of diabetes.
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#52115 - 23 May 07 20:10 Re: JP/Candy business is tasty, thanks to the RI's sweet tooth [Re: KuKuKaChu]
Ena Offline
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Registered: 26 Nov 05
Posts: 765
Loc: Sydney
Yes -too much ketjap manis too.
I like silver queen, because its a bit salty imo.
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#52161 - 24 May 07 10:56 Re: JP/Candy business is tasty, thanks to the RI's sweet tooth [Re: Ena]
doremi Offline
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Registered: 17 Jan 07
Posts: 488
Loc: slouch couch
Problems solved (no diabetes or coronary diseases) if we all switch to dark chocolate. wink

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