The subsidiary of Hong Kong-listed H&H Group says most of its products are made in accordance with halal standards, but it is now working on securing official halal certificates.
The company currently has two halal-certified products, namely Swisse Ultivite E-Sential Multivitamin and Swisse Ultibiotic Daily Balance Probiotic, after obtaining halal certification from the Halal Certification Authority Australia (HCAA).
The halal-certified Swisse Ultivite E-Sential Multivitamin is already available in Singapore and will launch in Malaysia in Q2.
Speaking with NutraIngredients-Asia, Charles Ravel, H&H Group Managing Director for Asia, U.S., Global Export & Global Brand, said registering the products with halal certificates would be a top priority for the company, since it would be expanding in markets with a Muslim majority.
“We are growing fast into some countries where Islam is followed, I am talking about some of the South East Asian markets, such as Malaysia and soon to come, Indonesia.
“That’s why this is becoming increasingly important for us to make sure that we satisfy consumers of these markets,” he said.
The company is planning to expand into Indonesia this year, it said in its FY2020 financial results.
For a start, the company would register products which are applicable to a wider group of consumers, such as multivitamins.
“Multivitamin is definitely one of the products which cater to a larger group of audience, that's the reason why we started the certification process on these products before others.”
On the other hand, based on the company’s research, halal certification is not on top of the list when consumers purchase vitamin and mineral supplements, though it ranks high up for general foods products.
Nonetheless, senior consumers are more interested in consuming halal certified supplements.
Hence, the company would also prioritise products that cater to the needs of senior consumers and gradually products for the millennials for official halal certification.
“Take Indonesia for example, this is one of the youngest countries in the world, with a very large millennial population which is increasing very quickly, and the senior audience are engaging these consumers in consuming halal certified products.”
Aside from a religious practice, other reasons consumers would prefer a halal-certified supplement would be because of its association with wellness and animal welfare, Ravel said.
“For the more senior consumers, there is certainly the notion of religion which is the biggest part of their decision-making process for buying halal-certified products.
“For the younger generation, while halal is driven by religion, halal is also connected with wellness, animal welfare, health, nature, and these are what our brand is promoting and that's the reason why the vast majority of our products are already made in line with halal requirements, though they have not yet undergo the official halal certification process.”