Speaking to us at the Food Ingredients (Fi) Asia 2018 exhibition, Antonius Utomo Prihantono, Azelis Indonesia Managing Director explained further.
“One of the areas we are focusing on here is our strong smoke flavouring range, which originated from Azelis Europe. Our other main business focus in Indonesia is on technology surrounding hydrocolloids and modified starch,” he said.
For hydrocolloids, the company's main target includes formulators who have established technology, or those who want to enter business but require technical back up.
The main end-users are predicted to be the younger generation with higher income.
“[This] millennial generation has a practical mindset, wanting ready-to-eat and ready-to-drink food and beverage options,” he said.
“Hydrocolloid technology can be used in products like yoghurt and beverages, and absolutely fits the needs of this segment. We will work with local manufacturers, most of which are SMEs, to meet the demands.”
As for modified starch, the target applications are more specialised.
“Modified starch will be used for sauces, like chili sauce, as well as specialised sauces, like those we have specially formulated for sausages using both this technology and our smoke flavouring,” he said.
“There are many opportunities in the market, but we will go step by step. Definitely, we will start from the technology [with which] Azelis is more familiar, and for which the [Indonesian] market is not saturated yet.”
Further plans with regard to the company’s five-year-development in the food area will be drawn up next year, “after we have remapped customer demands and identified the trends to focus on,” said Antonius.
Azelis in Indonesia
Azelis opened its first Indonesian office in Jakarta just last year. Prior to this, the company had next to no presence in the country, said Antonius.
“Azelis was completely new to start the business in Indonesia. [Before this], we didn’t do anything here, unlike in India, China and Japan where we started back in 2007, 2012 and 2013 respectively,” he said.
He added that with this office, the country now has presence in 11 countries in the Asia Pacific.
Additionally, Azelis has two application labs in Jakarta, one of which is dedicated to food applications.
“Innovation through formulation is one of the key messages we would like to convey [though our products] in Indonesia,” said Antonius
Azelis in Asia Pacific
Singapore is the regional headquarters for Azelis in the Asia Pacific region.
“Although we don’t grow the business in Singapore per se, it is Azelis’ hub for supporting our regional business in areas like marketing and business development. It is also our regional distribution hub,” said Andy Sutanto, Azelis APAC Product and Marketing Manager.
The company’s biggest presence is in China, which Sutanto attributes to its large population, rapid urbanisation and busier lifestyle that demands more convenient products. Antonius added that dietary habits are also a major factor.
“The consumption of milk and dairy is a part of their normal daily lives, unlike here in Indonesia,” he said.
“The market size here is much smaller, but what this means is that we have a much larger opportunity for growth.”
Trends in the region
“In the food business, what we are observing currently in the Asia Pacific region is a growing population and urbanisation, growing disposable income leading to a growing middle class. This has led to a mindset demanding more, healthier food and drinks,” said Sutanto.
Additionally, consumers’ fastidiousness about additive and preservative addition into their food is on the rise.
“Increasingly, we are seeing food like organic food and those from natural origins getting more popular.”