‘Fun and nostalgic’: Chupa Chups launches first milk-based beverages in Japan market
The products include a strawberry cream milk drink launched in July, and a cola jelly drink scheduled to release in August.
Available in 190ml servings, it will be available in convenience stores and drug stores nationwide.
Widely known for its lollipop and confectionery products, this will be Chupa Chups first foray into the dairy beverage market.
Chupa Chups had previously collaborated with Unilever in Europe to develop desserts, bakery products, ice cream, and drinks.
Christine Cool, area licensing manager of the Perfetti Van Melle Group, told FoodNavigator-Asia that the firm decided to tap onto Chupa Chups’ distinct flavour profiles, which can bring innovation to the dairy drinks sector.
She said the brand “has huge awareness and longevity, and wants to bring novelty in the market.”
Toyo Beverage added that the collaboration was drawn on both firms’ interest in offering consumers a tasty, fun, and happy experience associated to the Chupa Chups brand.
For the young and old
The drink is targeted to the core consumers of its lollipops - children, teenagers and young adults.
Although Cool said it could also attract “older people who want to have a nostalgic experience that reminds them of the happy and fun times of their childhood”.
The jelly-cola flavour, one of the firm’s most popular in Japan, will be launched in August.
Despite acknowledging growing health awareness and consumer demands for reduced sugar products, Cool said consumers still “enjoyed the thrill of discovering new flavour sensations and emotions to have a moment of indulgence.”
She added: “Our first launches have revealed that consumers respond very well to the nostalgic association of our flavours to other F&B products and people like to have a small treat from time to time.”
In Japan, the Chupa Chups brand has branched into a lifestyle business over the past 15 years, with apparel, personal care products, and confectionery, which is managed by its licensing agent Sanrio Far East.
Cool said the firm felt it was the right time to dive into innovative F&B products in the country: “We feel that the brand is now ready to extend also in some selected food and beverage categories in Japan such as drinks or frozen novelties.”
Outside of Japan, Chupa Chups launched a soft drink version in Singapore and South Korea in 2017.