US ice cream brand launches in Cebu-A A +A
Monday, October 7, 2013
Jeff Puno of Visfood Corp. talks about Blue Bell Ice Cream during the brand’s launch in Cebu. The ice cream is the third top selling brand in the US although it is sold only in 22 states. (Allan Defensor/Sun.Star Cebu)
VISFOOD Corp., the exclusive distributor of Blue Bell Ice Cream in the Visayas region, is optimistic to make the US ice cream brand the preferred choice in the premium segment here, citing Cebuanos’ preference for products that offer value for money.
Jeff Puno of Visfood Corp. said they are marketing the Blue Bell Ice Cream in Cebu first, among other cities in the Philippines and Asia Pacific, saying that if the brand does well here it will do well anywhere in the country.
Blue Bell Ice Cream was launched last Saturday at the Ayala Center Cebu.
Choice of Cebu
“We picked Cebu as the venue for launching because we strongly believe that Cebuanos patronize quality products that provide value for money,” said Jeff, dismissing the
possibility the brand will fail due to presence of the local-based ice cream players.
“Market feedback in the past weeks is overwhelming. We really are banking on the value for money proposition that is evident in the Philippine market,” he said.
Jeff assured that the ice cream products retain the same quality when sold in the Philippine market.
Blue Bell is manufactured by Blue Bell Creameries, a Texas-based company that has been in the ice-cream making business for 100 years. It is also known as “the Little Creamery in Brenham” to ice cream lovers, the press statement said.
Blue Bell is the number three selling brand in the US, although it is sold in 22 states.
According to ACNielsen Data, Blue Bell Ice Cream is number one in sales per point-of-distribution across the US. They distribute in only 29 percent of supermarkets, selling more than $2 million, while its top four competitors sell in 88 percent or more of those stores across the total US market.
In Cebu, Blue Bell carries 14 flavors available in pints and half-pints, including its most popular flavor- Homemade Vanilla. It also distributes single serve snacks.
Jeff said they are currently in negotiation with supermarket owners, mall operators, restaurants and beach resorts for the availability of the products. Blue Bell can be bought at Rustan’s Supermarket Ayala, One Pavilion Mall Banawa, Gaisano Country Mall, David’s Kitchen, Shangrila-Mactan, BE Resorts, Mooon Café and in Blue Bell office in Banilad.
Ebe Puno of Visfood Corp. said they will bring the brand to Manila before the end of this month. They are also considering expansion in neighboring islands like Bohol, Boracay, Bacolod, and Dumaguete and in key areas in Mindanao. Visfood Corp. general manager Aina Sanchez said they will be opening a scooping station soon in Cebu.
Jeff said the beauty of having a scooping station is that it will allow them to showcase all the flavors of Blue Bell including the seasonal ones. He added they will also bring ice cream flavors that fit the health-conscious market.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on October 08, 2013.