BUSINESS Street food gets popular, becomes global icon


Street food gets popular, becomes global icon

20:01, May 11, 2021

A worker pours river snails-a key ingredient in making local specialty luosifen-into water to clean them at a workshop in Liuzhou, Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region, in September 2018. [Photo/Xinhua]

From January to April, the export value of luosifen, a specialty of the Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region's Liuzhou, has reached 7 million yuan ($1.08 million) and achieved more than quadruple growth year-on-year, local customs authorities said.

So far, the product has been exported to more than 20 countries and regions, including Singapore, South Africa, Russia, Argentina, Germany, Italy and Brunei.

Boiled with pickled bamboo shoots, dried turnips, fresh vegetables and peanuts in a spiced river-snail soup, the street food has developed into an iconic dish around the world.

"Exports did not go well at first because of scattered production and lack of export awareness," a customs official at Liuzhou said.

In 2016, demand for pre-packaged luosifen witnessed a surge, as many companies received orders from overseas. However, they didn't know how to carry out the export business properly. Fortunately, local authorities arranged some training courses on foreign trade to help cope with the situation while ensuring product quality. In January 2017, 50,000 bags of instant luosifen were shipped to the United States, its first journey to an overseas country.

In 2020, as the epidemic gave rise to the "home-bound economy" in foreign countries, overseas orders for luosifen skyrocketed.

"Our company exports luosifen to the Asian and American markets and plans to expand to the European market so that more Chinese friends and foreign friends can enjoy it overseas," said Chen Zihao, a foreign trade sales manager in Guangxi.

Yan Zhenhua, head of a food company in Guangxi, said customs simplifies the business process and improves the administrative approval efficiency to help expand overseas markets for luosifen.

What' s more, Liuzhou customs supports enterprise branding through protection of intellectual property rights to prevent infringement.

The "reform of luosifen export supervision" has contributed to the expansion of the international market. Liuzhou customs statistics show that in 2020, the export value of luosifen exceeded 30 million yuan, which is 35 times of the total export value of 2019.

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