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The leading dairy producer in Latvia Food Union announces the launch of Ekselence ice cream pop-up store in Shanghai, China, in the most premium department store New World Dai Maru which is visited by approximately 100,000 visitors a day. “It was exactly three months ago when a ship full of Latvian gourmet ice cream left the shore of Latvia and began its journey to China. Today it is my honour and pleasure to welcome this vessel and announce the opening of the first Latvian ice cream pop-up store Ekselence in China,” said Normunds Stanevics, AS Rigas piena kombinats (Food Union Group) Chairman of the Board, while launching the first Ekselence ice cream pop-up store in China.

“This wouldn’t be possible without support of our friends and business partners – Bright Food Group. Equally I would like to stress the importance of intergovernmental relations, which played an important role between China and Latvia, the excellent work of both embassies in Latvia and China, Latvia’s Ministry of Agriculture and the Investment and Development Agency of Latvia,” added Stanevics.

Ekselence pop-up store design and concept represents both Ekselence ice cream and Latvian cuisine values and will offer Latvia made premium gourmet ice cream Ekselence. The store will be open daily offering Ekselence Double and Ekselence family pack ice creams in variety of tastes. The average price for Ekselence Double is EUR 5.3 (RMB 38) and for Ekselence family pack is EUR 12.33 (88 RMB). Meanwhile Food Union launched Nu Smoothie branded sales points in five most visited and central department stores in Shanghai – Bao Shan, Zhong Huang Bai Lian, Wu Jiao Chang, Nan Jing, San Xin, that sell all natural ice cream Nu Smoothie.

“The opening of the first Ekselence pop-up store here in Shanghai’s most premium department store New World Dai Maru makes Food Union the first dairy and ice cream producer in the Baltic region to enter China’s market. We are very happy to make this first significant move, but we do have a long journey ahead of us. We are determined to expand our business in China by offering premium, high-value, healthy and nutritious dairy products,” commented Andrey Beskhmelnitskiy, Food Union shareholder.

“We see that Chinese consumers are becoming increasingly demanding and have sophisticated taste. Our Chinese customers are very well aware which products are contributing to good health at all ages and life stages. This is where we see the opportunity to showcase Latvia – one of the greenest countries in the world, and promote its tourism offer, culture and agriculture traditions, as well as business and investment prospects. Food Union’s strategic mission is to contribute in building a bridge between Latvian and Chinese nations with a common objective of growth and increasing prosperity,” added Beskhmelnitskiy.

“I welcome Ekselence to Shanghai, the most vibrant city of China. Shanghai is well known for its strive for excellence. Ancient Chinese proverb says – to the people food is heaven. I hope that everyone in Shanghai will enjoy the heavenly taste of Latvian ice cream Ekselence, learn more about Latvia and visit our beautiful country,” said H.E. Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Latvia to People`s Republic of China Ms. Ingrida Levrence.

The Ekselence ice cream pop-up store was launched by Food Union shareholder Andrey Beskhmelnitskiy, Chairman of the board of Rigas piena kombinats (Food Union Group) Normunds Stanevics, H.E. Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Latvia to People`s Republic of China Ms. Ingrida Levrence, Chairman of Meridian Capital Asia Limited Qiu Zhi Zhong, and managers of Bright Food Group.

The Ekselence ice cream pop-up store and Nu Smoothie pop-up sales points are presented in cooperation with Bright Food Group and Shanghai’s municipal institutions, and is the first step for Food Union to enter the market in order to receive costumer feedback and position both Ekselence and Nu Smoothie as premium gourmet ice cream produced in Latvia. The pop-up store and sales points will be open for two months for trial sales and after that Food Union team together with Bright Food Group will develop product portfolio for 2016 summer season sales in all the largest supermarkets in Shanghai.

About Food Union:
Food Union is the largest milk processing company and one of the leading food and beverage producers in Latvia, and the leading ice cream producer in the Baltic countries. The Food Union brand unites two biggest dairy companies in Latvia – AS Rigas piena kombinats and AS Valmieras piens, and the largest ice cream producer in Estonia – AS Premia Foods.
According to preliminary data, Food Union turnover in the Baltics in 2014 amounted to EUR 175 million. Food Union currently employs more than 800 people.
The operations of Food Union meet the highest food safety and quality standards. The company’s production facilities have received the ISO 9001, ISO 14000 and ISO 22000, FSSC 22000 and China’s food safety HACCP certificates.

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