On the 15th, Weilong Delicious Global Holdings Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as "Weilong"), the "first stock in Latiao", officially landed on the Hong Kong stock market, with an issue price of HK$10.56 per share. "The Latiao Museum jointly created by Pingjiang Food Industry Association and Mala Prince presents a series of processes such as the origin and development of Latiao, raw materials, craftsmanship, and testing, and has become a popular 'check-in' place for young people.
Chinanews.com, Changsha, December 15th (Reporter Tang Xiaoqing) On the 15th, Weilong Delicious Global Holdings Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as "Weilong"), the "first stock in Latiao", officially landed on the Hong Kong stock market, with an issue price of HK$10.56 per share.
From "junk food" to "Internet celebrity snacks", why did a small spicy stick become popular and successfully attracted the favor of many capitals?
The hot strip industry is developing healthily.
Photo by Luo Hao
Latiao is now one of the most popular snacks in China.
According to Frost & Sullivan, in 2020, the market size of spicy noodles will be about 45.5 billion yuan, and it is expected to grow to nearly 70 billion yuan in 2026.
The growth rate of spicy bars is even faster than that of the entire leisure snack industry. From 2016 to 2021, the compound growth rate of leisure snacks is 6.1%, and the compound growth rate of spicy bars is 9.4%.
Behind the hot sale of Latiao, many "fans" may not know that Latiao originated in Pingjiang County, Yueyang, Hunan.
In 1998, three innovative Pingjiang people invented Latiao. At the beginning of the invention, Latiao was spicy. There are people from Pingjiang who make spicy strips. In order to adapt to the tastes of northerners, many companies reduce spicy and sweeten spicy strips. Liu Weiping, the founder of Weilong, is also from Pingjiang County.
However, compared with Weilong's sweet and spicy taste, most of the spicy strips companies in Pingjiang retain the spicy and spicy taste from the beginning of the invention.
However, in the initial stage of the industry, due to problems such as extremely low production thresholds, irregular operations, lack of unified standards, and extensive management, Latiao was once labeled as "junk food" and "unhealthy".
Food is food to safety first.
If the hot strip industry wants to develop, it must transform and upgrade.
A group of spicy strip practitioners and local regulatory authorities have made continuous efforts to promote the healthy development of the spicy strip industry.
Zhang Yudong, the founder of the authentic Latiao brand "Spicy Prince" in Pingjiang, Hunan, the birthplace of spicy strips, took the lead in upgrading the raw materials, using natural flour, non-GMO cooking oil, no chemically synthesized sweeteners, pigments and chemically synthesized preservatives; Long has established a product standard and quality management system internally, set up a special quality management organization, and hired a group of food experts and quality inspection organizations as production consultants.
In 2007, Pingjiang Latiao Enterprise took the lead in formulating the local standard of Hunan Province "Xiangwei Flour Cooked Food", which became the first standard in the Latiao industry.
"As various regions have successively formulated their own standards with reference to Hunan's local standards, the market reshuffle has intensified, black workshops have been further eliminated, and compliant companies have taken advantage of the momentum." Zhang Yudong said that Mala Prince not only established a healthy spicy bar research and development center in Changsha, but also invested in 30 million yuan to build the first 100,000-level GMP clean workshop in the spicy bar industry.
"Pingjiang supervises spicy strip enterprises through the establishment of the Pingjiang County Food Industry Association." Pei Juezhong, a member of the Standing Committee of the Pingjiang County Party Committee and deputy county magistrate, told reporters that the government has strengthened supervision of the spicy strip industry, helping companies improve product quality, standardizing production, innovation and upgrading, etc. To provide strong guidance and promote the healthy development of the entire industry.
After the standardization of production management in the industry, the number of Chinese spicy strip enterprises has been halved, but the output value of the spicy strip industry has increased from the initial few hundred million yuan to 30 to 40 billion yuan. Most of the spicy strip production enterprises have passed the QS production license certification, and it is forbidden to add food The situation of additives has basically disappeared, and standardized production has been realized.
In July 2022, the spicy strip industry standard was officially announced.
Tear off the low-end label, Latiao successfully counterattacked.
At present, the total output value of Chinese spicy strips is 60 billion yuan, of which Pingjiang, the "hometown of Chinese spicy strips", accounts for 20 billion yuan, and there are 117 spicy strips companies in total.
The sales volume of the entire Pingjiang Latiao industry continues to grow. The compound annual growth rate of Pingjiang Latiao exceeds 10%, and the compound growth rate of Mala Prince's three-year sales has reached 112%.
Photo by Luo Hao
Out of the circle
From the "post-80s" to the "post-00s", the strong national base has made Latiao the "number one" Internet celebrity among casual snacks.
Today, Latiao has become a snack for primary school students, a snack for white-collar workers, and even a "social currency".
The love of the new generation of consumers is an important factor for Latiao to be favored by capital.
Aiming at the young market, latiao companies have begun to "unique tricks".
Weilong once seized the popularity of "Apple Style", planned to operate his official food website as the official website of Apple products, and also cooperated with "Glory of the King" across borders to capture the vision of game fans.
Mala Prince held the International Mala King Contest, built China's first Latiao professional class, the first Latiao Museum, etc. to interact with young consumers, allowing consumers to re-understand Latiao, helping Latiao tear off the low-end label, Lead Pingjiang Latiao to "out of the circle" frequently.
"The Latiao Museum jointly built by Pingjiang Food Industry Association and Mala Prince presents a series of processes such as the origin and development of Latiao, raw materials, craftsmanship, and testing, and has become a popular 'check-in' place for young people." Zhang Yudong introduced, Pingjiang County Vocational Technology The school also co-founded the country's first professional class for spicy strips with Mala Prince, offering courses such as extrusion mechanism, food quality and safety, and marketing, covering all aspects of spicy strips from production to sales.
The "post-00s" students also collaborated with the Liuzhou Snail Noodle Industry College to make "Spicy Snail Noodles".
From January to September this year, Mala Prince's online sales exceeded the "100 million" mark for the first time, and its e-commerce main product links ranked first in the transaction volume of Tmall's secondary categories for a long time.
Latiao not only "out of the circle" in China, but also became the new favorite of "Internet celebrities" among overseas gourmets, sold to more than 160 countries and regions around the world.
The relevant person in charge of Tmall Overseas said that domestic brands such as Weilong, Spicy Prince, Three Squirrels, Baicaowei, and Liangpin Shop are very popular overseas. Consumers in Japan, Singapore, South Korea, and the United States love Latiao the most. The most frequently purchased.
The huge young consumer group is attracting more and more new players to join the hot bar industry.
In recent years, snack manufacturers including Three Squirrels, Yanjin Shop, and Baicaowei have joined the spicy bar industry across borders.
With the active layout of new and old players, the future of Latiao is exciting.
"We will keep the gene of the authentic Latiao, the birthplace of Latiao, keep upgrading products, and spread the Latiao brand and Latiao culture in a way that young consumers like."
However, some experts suggest that, to seize the young market, latiao companies should not over-market and avoid "rolling over".
At the same time, the younger generation of consumers also have a "punk-style" health-preserving lifestyle.
In the long run, spicy strip companies still need to continue to find new breakthroughs in making products healthier and less harmful, in order to be "long-term popular".
Pingjiang was awarded the "Hometown of Chinese Latiao".
Photo courtesy of the Spicy Tiao Professional Committee
After Weilong goes public, does it mean that it will usher in a bright moment?
In fact, on the eve of Weilong's listing, some controversies and doubts also came.
According to the prospectus, the revenue in the first half of this year was about 2.261 billion yuan, down 1.8% from 2.303 billion yuan in the same period last year, while the profit turned from profit to loss, and the loss reached 261 million yuan.
In addition, factors such as food safety, single product line, and excessive reliance on distributors for sales revenue are always threatening Weilong.
Of course, this is also a problem that the entire hot strip industry is facing.
However, what consumers expect is that the government, food industry associations, spicy strip companies, etc. are still working hard.
Not long ago, the country's first Spicy Tiao Professional Committee was established in Pingjiang, Hunan.
This means that the Pingjiang hot bar industry has entered a new stage of industry self-discipline, self-management, and orderly development.
"The Latiao Professional Committee is composed of hundreds of Latiao enterprises, which is the first of its kind in the country." Zhang Yudong, chairman of the Latiao Professional Committee, said that the establishment of the Latiao Professional Committee will better leverage the advantages of the birthplace of Latiao and protect the authenticity of the birthplace. Latiao gene, and at the same time, on this platform, national latiao enterprises can leverage on each other, support each other, develop together, promote the joint construction of latiao brands, and promote the healthy development of the latiao industry.
According to industry insiders, Weilong's listing may be seeking new growth points.
Zhang Yudong believes that the listing of Weilong is a happy event for the industry and will inject new vitality into the hot strip industry.
"As the same industry, we should achieve complementary advantages in the development of competition and cooperation, and through joint efforts, we will make the cake of the spicy strip industry bigger."
"Weilong is listed as the first stock of Latiao, which can allow Pingjiang Latiao companies to get more cakes." Pei Juezhong said that Pingjiang will continue to take advantage of the birthplace of Latiao to build a Latiao industry development cluster in Pingjiang and make it bigger.
In the future, the output of the spicy strip industry will further increase. It is estimated that by 2025, the market output of the spicy strip industry in China is expected to reach 2.4488 million tons.
This "cake" will allow many food manufacturers to continue to develop new types of spicy bars to adapt to changing consumer preferences.
As competitors continue to enter the market, for Weilong, even if it is successfully listed, it is still hard to say whether the future can be expected.