KITA News and Reports
  • Win with Unique ‘Sweet & Spicy’ Menu


    Win with Unique ‘Sweet & Spicy’ Menu

    -      KITA issued ‘The Major Trends and 2018 Prospects in Chinese Restaurant Industry’ -


    Recently, in the Chinese restaurants, "sweet & spicy" is emerging as a keyword as spicy taste is popular for meals and sweet taste is popular for snacks and desserts.


    The Chengdu Center of the Korea International Trade Association (Chairman, Kim Young-joo) stated so in the report titled ‘The Major Trends and 2018 Prospects in Chinese Restaurant Industry’ based on the results of the analysis of the ‘Big Data of Chinese Eating Habit in 2017’ produced by Koubei, the O2O living service company of Alibaba.


    According to the report, Chinese people prefer traditional spicy taste like Chinese shabu-shabu "HuoGuo", and the number of sweet food on the menu is increasing as bakery, dessert and cafe are receiving more attention from young people. In particular, according to foreign food sales trends in 2016, the Korean food sales in the first-tier cities declined by 14 percent compared to the previous year. Therefore, it appears that it is necessary to strengthen the marketing activities for the under second-tier cities along with developing simple menus with the 'sweet & spicy' reflecting the latest trends, diversifying from the Korean traditional food.


    The report also shows that Chinese people prefer to eat out on weekdays rather than weekends and they prefer simple meals to formal ones. The responses that ‘They prefer to eat out on weekdays’ (68.4%) were more than double compared to 'weekend' (33.3%). Also, 'simple menu with a single menu' (42.7%) was far more popular than 'formal meal with various menus together' (11.5 %). ‘Chinese food’ (73.3%) was the absolute favorite of Chinese people and only 1.3 percent of the participants responded that ‘I prefer Korean or Japanese the most.’


    The report suggests five trends in Chinese restaurant industry in 2018 as ① light and quick menu customers born in 1980s and 1990s who are the main force of eating out consumption recipes and marketing that satisfy the well-being trend sweet taste to attract young people enjoying desserts and drinks and ⑤ taste, cost-effectiveness, and freshness.


    Lee Suk-won at Chengdu Center of KITA stressed Korean companies need to diversify marketing activities, including developing cost-effective menus, strengthening delivery service and introducing a variety of set menus to satisfy young customers who were born in 1980s and 1990s, China’s major consumption power.  


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