MANILA - Global snack giant Mondelēz International said it sees robust demand in the Philippines for its cookies and chocolates as Filipinos eat "about six meals a day and snack in between meals".
Mondelez, which is behind the brands Oreo and Cadbury, said the Philippines is now one of the fastest-growing snacks and beverages markets in the developing world.
"The growth of snacking around the world in the coming five to 10 years will be largely coming from the developing markets. About 80 percent of it," said Mondelez chairman and CEO Dirk Van de Put.
He said sales of Oreos and Cadbury chocolates have gone up in the Philippines in recent years.
"Southeast Asia and the Philippines, in particular, are going to be a major factor for us," Van de Put said.
The Mondelez CEO also said that it had become easier to do business in the country, while consumer optimism had risen.
"Overall, our feeling is that it is a market that we want to invest in for the future," said Van de Put in an exclusive interview with ANC's The Boss.
Mondelez, however, is not yet keen on setting up a manufacturing plant for Oreo and Cadbury in the Philippines, saying "the business would need to become bigger before we do that."
"We sort of have a system whereby the different markets have different plants and then they supply the markets. We cannot have all plants in all markets."
The company also faced headwinds after new excise taxes were slapped on sugary drinks. This led Mondelez to hike the price of its popular Tang powdered juice drinks.
"We had to increase Tang prices by 85 percent, which was quite substantial," said Van de Put.
The higher prices led to a huge decline in sales volumes for Tang, he said.
Despite this setback, Mondelez said sales of its other products remained robust.
The company is also committed to sustainability, Van de Put said.
Mondelez aims to eliminate 65 million kilograms worth of packaging material worldwide by 2020. It is also looking to use recyclable materials for packaging its products, he said.
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