Cémoi eyes export growth with French savoir-faire

Cémoi hopes French chocolate's quality image will help it grow in key export markets in North America and Asia

Cémoi is aiming to grow its own brand business in the US and Asia with a string of product launches marketed with a French touch.

The Perpignan-based firm’s sales come mainly through private label goods while it also supplies cocoa ingredients. But 16% of its business comes through own Cémoi brands and it aims to grow Cemoi branded sales 5% in the international markets, especially in North America and Asia.

Asia: 'A market to build'
“Cémoi is very famous for the truffles around the world because it shows the quality of our product and also the savoir faire, the French touch,“ Camille Danel, cocoa and chocolate communication assistant at Cémoi, told ConfectioneryNews.

In September this year, the company will launch Ivorian cocoa butter truffles and a fine chocolate assortment under the Jacquot brand for the Chinese and Japanese markets. The assortment features French imagery including a Paris Eiffel Tower design on one of the chocolates and on the box. The company is aiming to grow Jacquot brand international sales 5% this year.

“We’d like to grow in Asia because more and more Asian people are attracted by chocolate,” said Danel. “They don’t have the same customs as us but we try to adapt ourselves with milk chocolate, marshmallows and chocolate with hazelnuts.”

Danel said that the chocolate gifting segment in Asia was set for uplift. “It’s growing because you have middle-class consumers who want to discover new things as we have in Western Europe and America. It will be a very big market for the future.”

“There are already a lot of chocolate companies in Asia but it’s still a market to build.”

Cémoi sees potential in the whole of Asia and not only China. “For example, we have some business contacts in Mongolia. It’s not such as a big market but we have customers there,” said Danel.

North America: Marshmallow bears

The company is also eyeing growth in the mature North American market.

“In America we are developing our market with a very specialist product, the little marshmallow bears. It’s very well appreciated in the US,” said Danel.

The company has also launched marshmallow coconut crisp for the US and Canada, while other launches include Cémoi branded Nature Fruit Jellies and Amarena Cordial Cherries, which are derived from a special syrup cooking process whereby the cherries are heated six times in six days.

Cémoi’s has US distribution with retailers such as Walgreens, Meijer and Costco and also sells in Canada through Walmart, Target and others.

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