Gulfood 2018

Thai palm oil company continues diversification drive with new functional coconut water drinks

By Lester Wan contact

- Last updated on GMT

Romeo and Julieta, coconut water products containing collagen and cordyceps, will be launched next month.
Romeo and Julieta, coconut water products containing collagen and cordyceps, will be launched next month.
A Thai firm best known for its palm oil products is extending its functional beverage range with coconut water products containing beauty-boosting collagen and fatigue-fighting cordyceps.

Previously, OPG Tech Co. was mainly in the palm oil business, with products including crude palm oil, palm fruit organic fertiliser and palm olein products, as well as its Khum brand of palm oil and soybean oil for cooking.

In 2016, the company diversified its product offering and began producing its Coc'eau coconut water drink, which it says is 100% natural coconut water with no artificial colours, flavours or preservatives.

According to regional sales section manager Duangjai Suriyapol, their coconut water stands out from competitors' as it contains coconut puree, and is positioned as a premium product.

Further diversification

Recently, the company further developed the Coc'eau product line to include Coc'eau Awake, an energy drink version of its coconut water. Coc'eau Awake has the added benefits of taurine, and vitamins B3, B6 and B12.

Now, it has introduced Romeo and Julieta. The new kids on the block are stylishly-packaged functional drinks soon to be launched in Thailand.

Coc'eau Romeo is the same premium coconut water, but with cordyceps extract added to enhance men's health and relieve fatigue. It also contains grape juice, zinc, vitamin B3 and collagen.

Coc'eau Julieta, meanwhile, claims to be good for health-conscious women who want healthy and good-looking skin. Aside from coconut water, it also contains phyto-oestrogen, zinc, vitamin B3 and collagen.

Romeo and Julieta will be launched next month.

Apart from Thailand, the Coc'eau coconut drinks are currently available in China and Hong Kong and, since two months ago, in small quantities in Dubai and Brunei.

Middle East challenge

Speaking to us at Gulfood in Dubai, Suriyapol said price was the biggest hurdle to boosting sales in the Middle East.

"I feel there is opportunity here but I'm not sure about price competitiveness. Our products all use high-quality ingredients but a lot of customers here say the price is too high and have asked us to cut the price,"​ she said.

"We have taken this into consideration and may decide to develop some products specially to cater to this (Middle East) market."

For Thailand, she said that the healthy trend in drinks is continuing to grow, with more beverage companies recently starting to develop functional drinks, especially for digestive health.

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Healthy Ageing APAC Summit 2018: Our next event will assess how the food and nutrition industry can meet the needs of APAC’s rapidly-ageing populations of today and tomorrow. The event, in Singapore on June 12 and 13, will bring together policymakers, academics and industry experts from the likes of Nestle, Blackmores, Swisse and Japanese ‘engay’ food pioneers Nutri co.  Find out more here​.

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