Ghanim aims high with its Brunei Halal brand

Ghanim International Food Corporation announced last Friday that it
is seeking to conduct business with major retailers to sell its
products under the Brunei Halal
brand. Interim CEO Noel Shield said that the company is aiming for
retailers like Tesco and Carrefour and is targeting demographics within
the UK, the Middle East and Europe with “high disposable incomes.”

“And these countries are the ones that can help absorb the brand
more efficiently and quickly. And they’ve got a population that would
pay for a premium,” he explained, Brunei Times reports.

“That’s where we want to position the brand,” Shield said. “We want
to position it as being one of the leaders in the world of quality.”

Shield made the announcement at a workshop for small and medium
enterprises (SMEs) in the national Halal agenda and briefed them
regarding company plans for product development. Product prices will be
the highest possible in their market.

Products marketed under the Brunei Halal brand will have to
guarantee food safety and quality, such that producers will not be able
to cut corners to lower prices, Shield said. The products will embody
the highest environmental and religious law standards to build consumer
confidence and drive market positioning.

The goal is to make products within the top 100 range in each target
demographic. This will both create volume and tell Ghanim what sort of
products would be most profitable to develop, the CEO asserted.

“Most supermarkets sell their products by range, which is the reason
why we wanted the products with all the labels displayed,” he
elaborated. “But where you can put a collective range together is when
you can easily do promotion and marketing.”

“One of the supermarket chains that we’ve spoken to, initially, if
we have the depth of range of products, is prepared to give Brunei
Halal a position in the supermarket to sell the brand,” he elaborated.
“In all fairness we’ve had some tremendous feedback from big retailers
such as Tesco – Tesco is my main global target because it spans across
many countries and territories, such as Eastern Europe, the UK,
Thailand, China, Korea, India, Indonesia and the US.”

The products to be sold under Brunei Halal will be snack foods,
confectionery, canned fruits and vegetables, spices and condiments,
breakfast foods, energy drinks, beverages, pasta and rice products,
sauces, canned seafood, Asian specialty lines, cooking oils and meat,
seafood and dairy.

To mitigate the burden of high supply chain costs, Ghanim will aid
local manufacturers. It will not help regarding high labour or imported
raw material costs, however.

“They can’t afford to go back to the government for assistance all
the time,” Shield argued. “They have to have their blueprint, costs,
projections, and then come and sit down with the government and say,
‘This is what I want to do.'”

Ghanim is a cooperative venture between the Brunei Government and Kerry FSDA of Hong Kong.

The Brunei Industry and Primary Resources Ministry with the
cooperation of Brunei Islamic Religious Council, the Religious Affairs
Ministry and the Health Ministry founded the brand Brunei Halal in
2004. It is hoped that it will help the national economy transcend the
oil and gas industries.

By Natalia Real