Korean joins the fast food route

Korean joins the fast food route

Dak Galbi and Kudsan cafes offer quick snacks

Ms. Kanokorn, left, and Ms. Preeyawan, right, announce a collaboration to provide freshly cooked Korean meals at Kudson cafes on the second floor of select 7-Eleven stores across the country.

Korean food is perceived as premium in Thailand. Thais rarely order it for takeout, mostly from chain restaurants in shopping complexes, hotels, or Korea Town on Sukhumvit Road.

Korean restaurants have been operating in Thailand for more than two decades, but only gained popularity after the South Korean historical drama Dae Jang Geum broadcast locally in 2005, telling the story of an orphan cook who becomes the king’s first female doctor.

Since then, Korean cosmetics, K-pop, electrical appliances, instant noodles, K-series, and Korean cuisine have gained popularity in Thailand.

Popular Korean food brands in Thailand include Bon Chon under Minor Food Group, Red Sun under Food Passion and Dak Galbi under Charoen Pokphand Foods, the flagship company of food giant Charoen Pokphand Group.

In 2020, the market value of Korean food was estimated at 2 billion baht, with an average growth of 4-5% per year.

“We believe the Korean trend will last a long time in Thailand, with the cuisine expected to become a traditional local food within the next five years,” said Preeyawan Tantasuralerk, senior vice president of Dak Galbi Group.

In an effort to raise the profile of Korean dishes among Thai consumers, Dak Galbi has partnered with Kudsan, a lifestyle cafe under CP All Plc, the operator of 7-Eleven stores, to develop and supply four Dak Galbi Korean dishes freshly cooked at 555 Kudsan lifestyle cafes. , which are located on the second floor of select 7-Eleven store branches across the country.

This collaboration began on April 4.

Popular dishes include Tteokbokki (hot and spicy rice cake), Korean fried chicken wings, and Korean fried chicken with rice, which range in price from 89 to 129 baht.

“The demand for freshly cooked food has steadily increased, driven by the Covid-19 outbreaks, which have prompted Thai people to become more hygienic and health conscious,” Ms Preeyawan said.

“Five K-pop drama series are among the top 10 titles on Netflix, helping to promote Korean food culture. The spicy taste of Korean cuisine also attracts the appetite of Thai people.”

She said the company plans to add four new Korean dishes to Kudsan cafes in June.

Dak Galbi wants to increase the number of Kudsan cafes offering its dishes to 1,200 branches by the end of this year and 2,000 branches next year from 555, Ms Preeyawan said.

Kanokorn Thipayaponkul, head of Kudsan and Belline’s Premium Cafe under CP All, said Dak Galbi’s provision of Kudsan Korean dishes will differentiate its stores from rivals and attract more B-tier customer groups.

Customers can also order Kudsan Korean dishes through the 7-Eleven delivery app, she said.

According to Ms. Kanokorn, there are 5,000 Kudsan cafes across the country, and the number is expected to increase to 6,700 by the end of this year.

Ms Preeyawan said the company plans to spend 100 million baht to open 10 Galbi X outlets, its Korean street food brand, in Bangkok this year, bringing the total to 13 branches by the end of the year. year.

The company also wants to open Dak Galbi Korean cuisine restaurants in the third and fourth quarters at The Mall department stores and Central shopping complexes, she said.

Under its plan, Dak Galbi expects sales to rise to 500 million baht from around 200 million last year.

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