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Competition Heats up Juice Market
Competition in China's juice market is heating up this summer, with juice replacing tea as the most popular beverage here, today's Shanghai Morning Post cited market analysts as saying.

Juice products now available in China fall into three groups: those with syrup content of 10 to 20 percent, 21 to 50 percent and above 50 percent. Competition is expected to be particularly fierce for the low-content group, the analysts noted.

They said more brands, such as Qianshou and Nongfu Orchard, will be seen on local shelves alongside the four leading brands, Suntory, Kirin, President and Kangshifu.

And many new brands are seeking to grab market share with low-pricing strategies. For example, Yinlu is marketing its new 500-ml juice at 2.2 yuan (27 US cents), compared with 3.5 yuan for most other brands.

The competition is forcing some leading manufacturers to follow suit.

Suntory, for example, will lower prices by 20 to 30 percent. Its 500 ml products, priced at 3.5 yuan last year, will be sold for 2.5 yuan, according to a spokesman.

Analysts cited the huge potential of China's juice market for the stiffening competition.

They said Chinese consume 1 kilogram of juice per capita each year, which is low compared with 10 kgs worldwide and 70 kgs in the US.

(Shanghai Daily April 22, 2003)

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