Taiwan firm Laurel Enterprises is famous for its frozen dumplings for hotpot and sweet glutinous rice dumplings. Its Laurel Easy Life series of prepared meals was introduced two years ago and they have since become enduringly popular among shoppers.
So far, six separate meal lines have been developed, including six types of spaghetti and 12 types of fried rice.
Other dishes include noodles served with sauce, fried udon, oven baked rice and noodles, and western-style rice and pastas.
Customers have many variations to choose from. Laurel stresses that “it only takes five minutes to serve a delicious meal”. The retail prices of its products lie within the NT$40 to NT$60 range.
Not to be outdone, many convenience stores in Taiwan have also launched their own brands of frozen foods.
The market leader, 7-Eleven, has come up with its 7-Select series of microwave-friendly, frozen and fast foods. In addition to Italian pastas and fried rice, it also offers fried chicken, French fries, pizzas and other snacks.
With the advent of the summer vacations, it has also developed special snacks that go well with wine, such as braised salted peanuts and BBQ chicken wings.
The franchise firm invited famous models to advertise its products and tried to increase public attention with frequent TV ads.
Diversity apart, 7-Eleven has not lost sight of the fact that consumers are tightening their purse strings in these times of economic hardship.
The unit prices of its products range from NT$28 and NT$38, with special discounts for purchases of any three items.
Customers can choose any combination of main course and snack and have a good meal at a reasonable price, which suits most modern people on the go.
Such is also the model adopted by convenience stores in Hong Kong, which habitually sell instant rice and noodles, as well as snacks like fish balls and Xiu Mai.
The similarities suggest Hong Kong food dealers could consider successfully venturing into Taiwan’s burgeoning instant foods market with their own style of frozen dim sum and snacks.
from Tammy Tien, Taiwan Office