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Vietnamese firm looks to expand canned coconut water business


An ambitious Vietnamese company is developing a new coconut product with an eye on the international market.

There was a time when thirty liters of coconut water sold for VND5,000 (23 U.S. cents), when it was seen as an inferior by-product from the processing of coconut meat, supposedly the most valuable part of a coconut.

But times are changing, at least according to Betrimex, a company based in the Mekong Delta province of Ben Tre, which is currently producing canned coconut water under the brand name Cocoxim.

The company has just invested $20 million in building a factory for the production of its new product, and it is confident that canned coconut water will find success on the domestic market.

Despite the fact that coconuts can easily be found along the side of the road, canned coconut water is more convenient, as cans are easier to carry and require less effort to open compared to unwieldy coconuts.

Betrimex’s true ambition, however, is to conquer overseas markets, such as the United States, Canada, and Europe.

The demand for canned coconut water is rising globally. World consumption in 2015 was double that of 2012, with canned coconut water now regarded as a premium drink in supermarkets.

In the United States, sports drinks usually fetch around $1.80 a liter, while canned coconut water is oftentimes priced at $5 a liter.

Nguyen Minh Hoang, Betrimex’s vice president, believes that Vietnamese coconuts have a competitive edge over global competitors.

Coconut meat accounts for 35 percent of a Vietnamese coconut, while the world average is 30 percent.

Coconut water takes up 27 percent of a Vietnamese coconut, whereas the global average is 22 percent.

In addition, Vietnamese coconuts are considered sweeter than others.

With this in mind, Betrimex believes that it can succeed both domestically and internationally.

It remains to be seen whether the ambitious company will be able to achieve its goals.


Updated : 08/01/2016 16:09 GMT + 7

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