DEFROIDMONT STARTS KOREAN TO GAIN A FOOTHOLD IN CHINA
It’s a huge fish of the retailing that was visiting Defroidmont this friday morning in Maroilles. The Maroilles flamiches maker was receiving 2 buyers from the korean hypermarket chain E-Mart. Their visit may end up on exporting products from the pastry cook in Asia.
Shin Won-Mo and Jayden Jongtan Lee are early risers. The two buyers from E-Mart, the number one of korean mass marketing arrived at the Defroidmont factory at precisely 8 o’clock. Program : visit of the production workshops, product tasting and first discussions about possibilities of exporting a few containers in South Korea. « With the investments we did in 2009, our production tool is similar to a Ferrari. Our problem is that we are using it as a Golf » explains Patrick Defroidmont, CEO of the company. « For us exporting could be a good way to not be as dependent of the french market anymore, our main outlet ». For the moment, Defroidmont ships his tarts and flamiches to the Netherlands. Since september, an employee was recruited to find clients outside of France. « Last Tuesday, we were receiving English clients » attests Patrick Defroidmont.
The North of France effect is in full swing. Friday, two Koreans immediatly drew their iPhone when they discover a Maroilles cheese on the tasting table of Defroidmont. Same interest for the beer from Maroilles Abbey. Before a gastronomy trade exibition in Paris, E-Mart buyers planned on visiting the best cheeses from Pays de la Loire, Bretagne, North and Bourgogne which means 23 companies. « There are only six french cheeses with a controlled appellation of origin in Korea » details Shin Won-Mo, dairy products buyer. « For us, it’s a real challenge to import new ones » After this first contact with treasures from Thiérache, the Koreans left with a smile on their face and arms full of gifts. Patrick Defroidmont hopes to see them again soon.
« What seduced the Koreans is that we are a family company which is very important for them » note Patrick Defroidmont. Indeed, since 1926, the company, first based next to Fourmies, is managed by Defroidmonts. Nowadays in Maroilles, the company employs about forty people and has a production site of 3900 square meters. It is specialized in the Maroilles flamiche but its range of products doesn’t end there. In the Defroidmont labs are dozing for example exclusives recipes of tomatoes Dans les labos de Defroidmont sommeillent, par exemple, des recettes inédites de brioches aux tomates brioches.