The partnership is part of CP Foods’ plans in introducing nutritional products catered to consumers at different life stages.
It also provides an opportunity for an Australian boutique milk formula firm to compete in the Thai market, which is currently dominated by the international brands, says Jeremy Okraglik, CEO of Nutura Organic.
The launch, which is expected to take place between January and March this year across hypermarkets and supermarkets, will feature both infant and adult milk formulas from Nutura Organic.
For example, its stage 1 to 3 infant formula available in both 800g tins and 66g sachets will be introduced to Thailand.
Speaking to NutraIngredients-Asia, Okraglik said that the products could fulfil the existing market gap for Australia-made and organic milk formulas in Thailand, which he said have not yet made its mark in the country saturated with international brands.
“Infant formula is a big market in Thailand, which is traditionally been dominated by the multinational companies. There’s probably about five dominant brands and each brand has multiple SKUs in terms of formulation and pack size.
“But what we think we bring different to the market is that at the moment, there is not an organic formula that's widely available in the market, and we will have a distinct point of difference as an Australian organic formula,” he said.
Another point of difference that the company hopes to leverage on is how its products only undergo spray-drying once, while most milk powder products usually undergo the process twice.
By doing so, the firm could better retain its products’ freshness and nutritional values, which the firm calls the “fresh milk difference”.
Third, he believes that the company is unique in terms of its product branding, design, and marketing.
“We aim to resonate and connect with consumers and so we talk about the story of The Village, which means that essentially our customers and we as Nutura try our best to support our customers through their whole journey,” he said, adding that the firm tried to provide holistic resources, including information on feeding or raising children on the product page.
The company manufactures its products in factories across Victoria, Australia, and works with farms located in Gippsland.
Okraglik, who used to live in Bangkok in the early part of his career, said that Thailand was identified as a market of interest several years ago.
“Thailand has always been interesting to us. We see the potential as not many small to medium infant formula brands from Australia have managed to penetrate the market. We’ve identified an opportunity to be innovative and connect with Thai consumers.”
CP Foods, on the other hand, has been looking to introduce high quality nutritional products for consumers at different life stages.
“We were lucky enough to meet CP Group, which has been looking to fill the need for high-quality nutritional products in its portfolios in order to cater to the whole customer lifecycle and supporting the nutritional needs of all age groups."
The company is working with CP Group’s subsidiaries for the distribution, retail, marketing, and the launch of its products into Thailand.
While the initial launch will focus on modern trade channels such as hypermarkets and supermarkets, there are also plans in launching the products into general trade channels, such as convenience stores, which enjoy a major presence across Thailand.
Adult formula for ageing population
Aside from infant milk formulas, Nutura Organic will also introduce its adult milk formulas on the back of an ageing population in Thailand, with consumers looking for “simpler” nutritional solutions to complement their elderly parents’ diet.
In which case, the company’s organic milk formulas could play a role in meeting the demand with its clean and premium nutrition, said Okraglik.
“It's a clean green, Australian alternative. The products have got premium nutrition and sometimes we find in Asia that micronutrients like vitamin D and calcium could be lacking from the diet, and so we make sure our products contain high amounts of these nutrients as well.”
The company has customised three adult formulas as part of its Thai market debut.
They are designed for 1) pregnant women 2) recovery from illnesses and 3) lifestyle nutrition to complement the daily diet.