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Fairy Chocolates targets Asia expansion with Cho'clair Minis

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By Oliver Nieburg+

Last updated on 13-Feb-2017 at 12:57 GMT2017-02-13T12:57:57Z

Smaller version of Cho'clair may have mainstream retail appeal, says Fairy Chocolates
Smaller version of Cho'clair may have mainstream retail appeal, says Fairy Chocolates

Belgian luxury confectioner Fairy Chocolates has introduced a mini version of its éclair praline fusion Cho’clair as it concentrates on expansion in Asia.

Cho’clair  - a praline in the form of an éclair  - was runner-up at the International Sweets and Biscuits Fair (ISM’s) ‘most innovative’ new product awards in 2015, where it was heralded as "the new macaroon".

Belgian startup Fairy, which developed the brand in 2014, will now focus on export markets outside Europe after adding a mini SKU.

The Minis have a one-year shelf life and carry Cho'Clair branding on their sides.

‘More mainstream’

"This product is perfect for China, Japan and Asian markets," Ann Van Acker, manager of Fairy Chocolates, told ConfectioneryNews at ISM Cologne this month.

"Now I have more variety....The little ones will have a lot of opportunities with retailers, more mainstream," she said.

The Fairy Chocolates owner said the larger original chocolate has a higher price point and has so far sold mainly in ultra-premium department stores and chocolate shops.

Cho’clair Minis retail for a suggested price of €7 ($7.45) and contain nine pieces in five flavors per box.

Japan expansion


Fairy Chocolates also has seasonal varieties of its Minis, including a Valentine's day version with red packaging.

Fairy Chocolates will this year focus on Asian expansion after adding two distributors in Japan.

The startup had hoped to enter Japan last year, but was still establishing trust among Japanese retailers and needed to change the colors on some products to comply with market regulations.

It is targeting premium retail and high-end department stores such as Takashimaya.

Fairy Chocolates last year entered Saudi Arabia and the UK with the orginal Cho’clairs.

Van Acker created a gold collection for the Saudi Arabian market and says she is tailoring designs to cater to preferences in each country.

Next stop: USA

Exports already account for over half of Fairy Chocolates sales, but it expects its overseas share will grow further.

Cho'clair originals are larger and have been selling predominantly in very high-end outlets.

"We have a lot of interest from the US," said Van Acker. "I really have to focus on Japan and Asia markets. And then have to work on the US - that's number two."

Fairy Chocolates also hopes to expand its portfolio.

"Next year, we have to come out with a new product - not an eclair - but something totally new. Also in another segment - maybe a biscuit. We need to have a bigger variety." 

The company began producing for itself, but is now using two contract manufacturers to keep pace with growing volumes. The products are produced in Belgium and shipped to Asia by air. 

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