Nestlé grabs a big slice of the Chinese market with continuous localization and innovation
A staff member at the Nestlé Coffee Center in Pu'er, Yunnan Province, conducts quality control checks (COURTESY OF Nestlé (CHINA) LTD.)
A long time ago in a city far, far away, there was a long-standing tradition of planting a special type of Chinese tea—Pu'er, giving the city its name in recognition of the tea.
Surprisingly enough the remote city, situated in southwest China's Yunnan Province, was chosen as the location for a coffee center with a total investment of 50 million yuan ($7.2 million) from Nestlé, the world's largest food and beverage company, in March 2016. The center trains local coffee growers, carries out experiments and stores coffee beans at appropriate temperatures and humidity.
Nestlé's story with Pu'er, however, dates back almost three decades. Early in 1988, the Swiss-headquartered conglomerate began developing coffee farming in the city. The company's agronomists gave on-site, free and on-demand training and technical assistance to local coffee growers, mainly in remote ethnic areas, with the aim of improving yield and quality and imparting market knowledge.