South Korean baby formula exports soar nearly 1,000 per cent
Powdered milk for babies is exported mainly to Asia and Middle East
By Bahk Eun-ji
More than 80 per cent of powdered milk produced in Korea was exported to China last year, data showed Monday.
According to a report on Korean manufacturers’ sales of baby formula released by the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs and the Korea Agro-Fisheries and Food Trade (aT), 86 per cent of baby formulas produced in Korea were sold to China — the largest market for baby formula — last year.
South Korea’s exports of baby formula have climbed nearly 1,000 per cent over the past decade. The value of powdered mild shipped overseas was 121.5 million won (US$112,120) last year, compared with 12.6 million won (US$11,617) in 2007.
Powdered milk for babies is exported mainly to Asia and Middle East.
Sales to China stood at 105 million won (US$96,894) last year accounting for 86 per cent of South Korea’s total exports of baby formula, the ministry said.
South Korean manufacturers benefited from the rapidly growing Chinese market since the government’s two-child policy took effect. Also, South Korean baby food is generally highly regarded in China, the report explains.
Imports of powdered milk to Korea are also growing.
Foreign-made baby formulas worth 69.5 million won (US$64,079) were imported last year, up from 18.7 million won (US$17,256) in 2007.
By nation, 60.5 per cent of Koreans bought baby formula from Germany, 22.7 per cent from New Zealand and 7.4 per cent from Australia.
More than 60 per cent of Korean customers bought baby milk online due to a relatively lower price compared with offline.
But price is the last issue Korean customers consider when buying powdered milk. Only 9.4 per cent gave price as the main reason while 24.5 per cent said reliability/safety was the main factor.