Case study: ANNEX Foods

ANNEX Foods is an Australian owned health and wellbeing food business that develops food products including cereals, oats, snacks, dairy, health foods, and baking products. It has been taking part in the Victorian Government’s trade program for several years.

In 2016 the Victorian Government’s China Business Office introduced 10 distributors of Victorian products, including ANNEX Foods, to executives at China’s Enjoy Shopping 24-hour television channel.

ANNEX Foods conducted a trial on Enjoy Shopping and sold 3,500 packets of Red Tractor instant oats in 30 minutes. Red Tractor products are now currently selling on Enjoy Shopping’s e-commerce platform.

Hong Xu, Export Manager at ANNEX Foods, said that his company benefits from both the inbound and outbound trade missions.

“It’s good to have international buyers to come to Australia, so we can show them where we make the products and how we make them, so they get more understanding of the food environment here,” said Hong.

“The Vic Government organised a manufacturing site tour last year during the inbound mission and we nominated us as a host. Around 15 international buyers turned up and we showed them where our products are made at our site in Clayton South.”

ANNEX Foods also participated in the 2017 international trade missions to FOODEX Japan and SIAL China. Without the government’s trade program, the company would not have been able to attend these tradeshows.

“As a small to medium Australian family-owned business we don’t have the funds or resources to exhibit in a country that we haven’t exported to before,” said Hong.

“This was our first time at FOODEX in Japan. We learned a lot about this market during three days of exhibiting and spoke to a number of buyers and we now understood what the market wants.”

“SIAL is the biggest Chinese food exhibition, and China is our biggest export market. The government’s support allows us to go there every year and show people we are continuing to work hard and make new products,” said Hong.

“It is a good way to test new products and concepts as a lot of buyers are coming. It’s also good to catch up with existing customers and to find out what they need from us in the coming year.”