A presumably conservative Japan to the king of fruits who have not taken to durians like the Chinese or Singaporeans, will have a chance to explore the fruit without stepping out of their country very soon. Durian which has already made it big in China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, will now seek to conquer the Land of the Rising Sun through a Malaysian exporter.
The very popular Musang King variety known for its meaty flesh and pungent aroma, has made its maiden trip and reached to port of Tokyo, thanks to Hernan Corporation, Malaysia’s largest exporter of durian related products. Considered a breakthrough market after a culmination of negotiation which took place for more that several years, the potential for Malaysian durians in Japan can be massive. With the support from MATRADE through various platforms, Hernan finally saw its first frozen durian shipment to the Japanese market become a reality.
Trade Commissioner of Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) Tokyo, Mr. Niqman Rafaee M. Sahar, said, “Malaysia offers variety of quality products that can adhere to the high standards and stringent market entry regulations in Japan. Although durian related products are considered new to local consumers and more promotion is still needed to educate the domestic market, demand has been positive with growing enquiries from Asian specialty stores and restaurants. It is important to have a good local partner and importer which will support and assist the product registration and distribution process, promotion and network in the local market”.
The durian products in Japan will be distributed and made accessible at local supermarkets, specialty grocery stores, online operators, restaurants and others. For a start, the products will be available in major cities in Japan such as Tokyo, Nagoya and Osaka.
Japan being the third-largest economy in the world by nominal GDP and fourth largest by purchasing power parity (PPP) offers interesting areas of opportunities, which Malaysian companies can explore. Food and beverages market size in Japan is worth more than USD230 billion and the opportunities available also include Halal related products and services.
In this vein, MATRADE encourages Malaysian companies to focus on the booming e-commerce industry in Japan. With the current pandemic situation, sales via online platforms have been growing at a double-digit rate and more business opportunities can be explored by leveraging this USD150 billion e-commerce market. In 2020, Japan remained as Malaysia’s fourth largest trading partner for six consecutive years, with total trade amounted to RM122.73 billion. Our exports to Japan has exceeded total imports from Japan by RM650 million.