China Food

It’s more expensive than takeout. Is there a future for self heating hot pot?


“ 
The self heating food under the
tuyere caters to the “one person eating” scene of the single economy and solves the pain point of young people’s liberation from the kitchen under the lazy economy. However, the self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot of 30 or 40 yuan a box has deterred many consumers.
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It is rumored in the Jianghu that there is nothing that one hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot can’t solve. If there is, two.
hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot, as a special food favored by Chinese people, has become a very important form of Chinese food with the characteristics of convenient operation, salty for young and old and delicious taste.
however, due to the limited production methods, cooking tools and other factors, especially in the takeout market, the packaging and distribution of hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot has also become a problem. People can not guarantee that they can always meet the temptation of taste buds when they want to eat hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot. This leads to a food that happens to solve similar consumption pain points – self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot.
as the name suggests, self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot is a kind of hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot convenience food that only needs to add cold water to the heating bag without the help of fire source or electricity, and steam the food materials through the self heating of the heating bag.
this novel fast food has attracted a large number of consumers’ attention in recent years because of its advantages of simple and convenient operation and no geographical restrictions. Especially after the epidemic, the demand for self heating fast food is rising, the market is expanding, and commodity prices are also rising. According to the report released by
leopard Research Institute, from 2015 to 2018, the market scale of China’s self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot industry increased from 230 million yuan to 4.49 billion yuan. At this stage, the number of stores selling self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot on online e-commerce platforms has exceeded 300; It is estimated that by 2023, the market scale of China’s self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot industry will reach 13.45 billion yuan.

in addition to the 4 billion self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot Jianghu, it also extends the types of self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot, self heating rice, self heating noodles, self heating spicy hot, self heating snail powder and so on. The price also ranges from more than 10 yuan to 30 or 40 yuan.
it is worth pondering that the self heating food of 30 or 40 yuan a box often exceeds the price of a takeout for many users in first tier cities. Who is paying for it? How big will the self heating fast food market be in the future?
capital continuous bet
In the 1990s, self heating food was born in the Chinese market and has developed for more than 20 years.
because most of the early participants were less well-known enterprises, the goods were “expensive and tasteless” and the consumer recognition was low, it was difficult to commercialize the brand and the industry spray was very small.
until around 2015, the emergence of self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot ignited the long frozen self heating fast food Jianghu. Coupled with the development of brands to e-commerce channels, self heating food is gradually emerging in the Chinese market and favored by consumers. According to the data of
leopards, in 2017, the self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot sold millions of copies in tmall; On the day of double 11, 2018, the sales volume of self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot in the whole network exceeded 4.5 million, a year-on-year increase of more than 2 times compared with 2017.
especially after the outbreak of the epidemic, many consumers chose the alternative self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot when the consumption demand for hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot was generated based on the risk of going out for dinner, so that the self heating food market ushered in a short outbreak.
the whole self heating food track is becoming more and more crowded. In addition to a number of hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot catering brands that smell business opportunities early, such as Dezhuang, Haidilao, Xiaolongkan and Dalong, players also have Internet rookies focusing on the vertical track of self heating food, such as zihi pot, Mo Xiaoxian and Shiren. Even three squirrels, liangpin shop, Weilong and other traditional snack enterprises also want to take a share. The self heating food under the
outlet caters to the scene of “one person eating” in the single economy, and also meets the needs of young people to liberate from the kitchen in the lazy economy. It seems to be a hot pastry for everyone and has attracted the attention of many capital.
according to incomplete statistics of Qingtong capital, from 2016 to 2019, there were only 6 self heating food track financing projects, and the maximum amount of financing publicly disclosed was nearly 10 million yuan; In the first five months of 2020, four enterprises in the industry obtained financing, ranging from tens of millions of yuan to more than 100 million yuan.

since 2020, capital has continued to rush to the hot fast food track. According to incomplete statistics of all-weather science and technology, from 2020 to 2021, the financing amount of self heating fast food track has exceeded 1 billion yuan, and the financing is mainly concentrated in several leading enterprises; Since this year, the whole convenient fast food track has also generated 10 financing, with a total financing of 1.05 billion yuan.

, especially several leading Internet consumer brands, have received a lot of capital injection in the short term after their strong growth strength broke out. Last month, “Mo Xiaoxian” announced the completion of round B financing of more than 100 million yuan, which is also the second financing obtained by the brand in the year; Previously, “zihi pot” was also exposed to obtain financing twice this year; Jingwei China, CICC capital, Hillhouse capital, Zhenge fund and other well-known investment institutions have entered.
Li Yuanfei, a founding partner of Xingwang investment and a C + round investment institution of hi pot, once said that the normal epidemic has accelerated the development of catering retailing, and the trillion catering retailing market has great opportunities. As the exclusive financial advisor of Mo Xiaoxian’s two rounds of financing and the investment director of Qingtong capital, Lei Qianying analyzed that self heating fast food is essentially a convenient fast food track, which is a traditional consumption demand rather than a new consumption demand.
“according to our incomplete statistics, the whole convenience fast food track may be a 100 billion market in the future; it will include many fast food categories, such as self heating, brewing and other ready to eat products.” Lei Qianying said that she is very optimistic about the self heating fast food track.
she also told all-weather technology that at present, no brand in the industry has touched the ceiling, so everyone has a large imagination space in the future, and Qingtong capital will continue to focus on this track.
take out price red line
The potential of self heating fast food track is not equal to the ceiling of all brands. In fact, the industry concentration tends to increase gradually.
iiMedia Research (AI media consulting) data show that in June 2020, the sales volume of the top five brands of Taobao accounted for 44.6%, and the sales volume of the top five brands accounted for 59.1%. Haidilao, zihi pot and Mo Xiaoxian ranked among the top three; by October 2021, the number of self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot enterprises in China had reached 78, the number of registration of relevant enterprises increased explosively in 2020, and the industry concentration was further improved. For example,
, and
Comparing Haidilao, zihi pot and Mo Xiaoxian, the three brands that occupy the main market sales, we will find that their self heating commodity prices are quite different.
just take the signature spicy beef self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot as an example. The product list of the above three brands basically consists of four parts: hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot bottom material, vegetable bag, vermicelli bag and beef bag. Among them, the vegetable bag basically includes bamboo shoots, fungus, lotus root, potatoes and kelp. There will be 2-3 more varieties of ingredients in zihi pot.
on an e-commerce platform, This product Mo Xiaoxian 390g sells for 56 yuan (double 12 activity price: 29.9 yuan), i.e. 14.36 yuan / 100g (double 12 activity price: 7.67 yuan / 100g); Haidilao 435g sells for 49 yuan (double 12 activity price: 39 yuan), i.e. 11.26 yuan / 100g (double 12 activity price: 8.97 yuan / 100g); zihi pot 171g sells for 58.8 yuan (double 12 activity price: 31.8 yuan), i.e. 34.39 yuan / 100g (double 12 event price: 18.54 yuan / 100g).

even if Chinese people love hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot again, the self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot of 30 or 40 yuan a box still discourages many consumers.
iimedia research (AI media consulting) the survey shows that the high price is the reason why some Chinese consumers do not buy self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot, accounting for more than 50% of the surveyed users; the acceptable unit price range of self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot for the surveyed consumers is mainly 15-20 yuan (34.1%), followed by 20-30 yuan (31.7%); only 17.1% of the surveyed users can accept the price of more than 30 yuan.

in addition to self heating food, takeout is also a popular way for consumers to solve the problems of being unable to cook and not wanting to cook. According to the financial report of
meituan, the unit price of takeout in the first quarter of 2021 was 49.2 yuan, down 5.5% year-on-year. However, according to media reports, the financial report The statistical caliber of medium passenger unit price is the unit price before subsidy. After actually counting the subsidy, the unit price paid by users is about 30 yuan. The
takeout unit price also virtually sets a red line for the pricing of self heating fast food products. Lei Qianying, investment director of Qingtong capital, told all-weather technology that after various channels of discount promotion activities, the selling price of self heated food in the market ranges from 10 yuan to 30 yuan and 40 yuan; The price positioning of self heating food of catering enterprises is on the high side, and the newly established self heating food enterprises have more price advantages, especially the products in the price band of 10-20 yuan are more competitive.
“26 yuan or the red line of early self heating food pricing. Brands need to control commodity prices. Self heating fast food exceeding 26 yuan is relatively difficult to sell.” Another investor who has long paid attention to the self heating fast food track disclosed to all-weather technology that this price line is mainly affected by two factors, namely, the low price of the first two brands and the average customer unit price of takeout in the first and second tier cities, “(around 2018) this line is basically about 26 yuan.”
according to the statistics of Everbright Securities, in terms of self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot category, the selling price of hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot catering brand will be high, and the unit price is basically between 30-50 yuan; The second is the new Internet brand. The price of self heated hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot products in the traditional leisure snack industry is relatively lower.
Everbright Securities also learned that, in fact, the OEM price of some self heated hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot is only 11-12 yuan, while the final sales price reaches 26-36 yuan, and the OEM cost is less than 50% of the selling price.
leopard Research Institute disclosed that the enterprise cost of self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot brand mainly includes OEM production cost, marketing cost and labor cost. Among them, marketing cost and labor cost are the core costs of the enterprise, accounting for about 50% of the total cost, OEM production cost accounts for about 10%, and the overall profit margin is about 25%. This figure (profit margin) is undoubtedly enviable in the catering industry. Even if
only looks at the gross profit margin, it can be seen from the financial report released by Yihai international, a hot instant food producer, that its gross profit of convenient instant food reached 26.7% in the first half of 2021, compared with 31.7% in the same period last year.
Yihai International’s figure (gross profit margin) is a normal level among catering enterprises. However, it has to be mentioned that the cost of convenient and fast food is significantly less than that of other catering enterprises.
why do some brands’ self heating fast food pricing remain high when the cost structure is relatively simple?
this is still a matter of brand positioning Department. According to Lei Qianying’s analysis, except that some brands can’t beat the price of self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot due to high meat content, under the same gram number, the difference in brand price is mainly due to different expenses. “Some brands may be more active in marketing. In order to ensure even profits, the price can’t be reduced”.
in addition, the hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot catering brand is limited by the per capita customer unit price and brand positioning of offline stores, and it is difficult to reduce the price.
according to Lei Qianying, self heating fast food that exceeds the unit price of takeout customers does not have much advantage in price, but it can meet the relatively high requirements of white-collar workers in first and second tier cities, but the brand audience is relatively narrow; “In the future, if the brand wants to sink and be close to the consumer life scene, the product price must be lower than the takeout to be competitive.”
brand seems to be aware of this problem and has begun to expand its product line and expand its price coverage. In 2019, zihi pot launched two new product lines of “bubble Hi” and “self heating pot”, covering the price range of 10-30 yuan; Last year, Haidilao also launched two fast food products, instant hot and sour noodles and rice, with prices as low as less than 10 yuan.
self heating fast food “ultimate battlefield”
Due to the high investment cost of independent factory construction, most self heating fast food brands choose the agent factory mode in the early development to reduce costs.
generally, the production of self heating fast food covers four aspects: food materials, seasoning, heating bag and tableware bag. The agent factory is responsible for production and preliminary packaging, and the brand completes the final assembly in its own workshop.
in this way, there will be a problem: the homogenization of products is serious, not only the ingredients of hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot are similar, but also the taste is highly similar.
for example, Baicao flavor self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot and three squirrels’ self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot all point to the same OEM – Sichuan Baijia Food Industry Co., Ltd.
in order to improve the competitive advantage of the brand, the leading enterprises are bidding farewell to the OEM and entering the stage of self built factories one after another, trying to carry out differentiated competition by innovating product tastes and comprehensively reducing costs.
the person in charge of relevant business of zihi pot told all-weather technology that the “light” mode adopted by self heating fast food enterprises in the past, In fact, it is OEM from different countries (OEM production) combination, but there are many problems with this model. For example, the products may be out of supply, resulting in out of stock, or the raw materials and production process cannot be standardized and controlled, resulting in difficult control of product quality.
during the epidemic in 2020, the home isolation led to a shortage of self hi pot products, and the sales volume and brand awareness have been continuously improved. This is also a problem Let zihi pot realize the importance of the supply chain and start to strengthen the investment and construction of the supply side.
up to now, there have been more than ten joint venture and holding factories of ziheguo, with a total area of more than 600000 square meters; The degree of control at the core raw material end has been significantly improved, and the independent R & D and innovation of products and equipment have been realized; It is estimated that by 2022, the self owned factory area of ziheguo will reach 1 million square meters.
“the advantage of self built supply chain is that on the one hand, it solves the uncertainty of supply, including the stability of product quality. At the same time, with its own supply chain, R & D is more efficient, because the external supply chain does not meet our high requirements, nor can it provide us with satisfactory processes and equipment, and there are great differences in ideas. A direct result of (self built supply chain) is that the gross profit of our products is also increasing year by year. “Said the aforementioned person in charge of relevant business of zihi pot. On the other hand, Mo Xiaoxian also began to pay attention to the construction of supply chain. When announcing the latest round of financing, the company made it clear that this round of financing will be mainly used for the upgrading of supply chain.
is a sales channel of self heated fast food First, the original life.com, a fresh e-commerce platform, has been gradually put on the shelves to sell self hot food since 2017. So far, the self heating food brands sold on the platform include Shu Daxia, Han Shifu, zihi pot, spicy guest, Guishan green, Zishan and other brands, involving nearly 20 categories such as self heating instant hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot, self heating rice, self heating noodles, self heating zongzi, self heating soup, self heating Chongqing hot and sour powder, self heating snail powder and so on.
a senior buyer of the commodity center of life.com told all-weather technology that when the platform buys self heated fast food, it will mainly consider the product brand & quality, food safety, taste, packaging material and cost performance; Among them, in terms of brand & quality, whether there is a large production plant is one of the important criteria.
feedback from the consumer side, the self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot series of life.com is the most popular self heating food on the platform, accounting for 30% – 40% of the sales of this category; Whether there are large manufacturers and strong brand endorsement, and whether there is a better packaging design under the same quality will become an important factor affecting the popularity of products.
to achieve differentiated development in these aspects, self built factories have become the inevitable choice of brands.
with the concentration of capital and resources to the head enterprises of the self heating fast food track, Wang Zhengqi, founder of Mo Xiaoxian, believes that “in less than two years, the industry will become a competition pattern with only a few head brands, and absolute head brands will occupy most of the market share. At that time, the rules of the industry will be redefined.”
if the timeline is lengthened, self heating fast food enterprises such as Mo Xiaoxian and zihi pot will be the target or traditional convenience food giant Master Kang.
after launching self heating fast food, Mo Xiaoxian and zihi pot launched brewing fast food, which directly inserted into the hinterland of Master Kang; Especially Mo Xiaoxian, brewing products have covered many categories, such as Xiaomian, Qianye noodles, Lanzhou ramen and so on. Master Kang, the leader of
instant noodles, is not idle. After launching “self heating noodles in Suda noodle restaurant” in 2019, he also launched the self heating rice brand “kangpin private house” in 2020 to continuously expand the product boundary.
Master Kang goes online to speed up self heating noodles
this brand war between instant noodles and self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot may start sooner or later.
“at present, the enterprise is still in the category competition stage, which is divided into self heating hot-pot/" 22375 rel="nofollow" target="_self">hot pot, brewing fast food, snail powder and other tracks; the whole convenient fast food track, the brand may eventually be the logic of slowly expanding towards the category. However, in order to dance with the Giants, the brand still needs to make the plate bigger and the volume bigger.” Lei Qianying said.
in this window period of rapid development of self heating fast food, build a perfect supply chain, expand sales channels, and realize going from online to offline, close to the consumer’s life scene, or the “internal skill” that each brand should first cultivate before fighting.
source: All Weather Technology (ID: iawtmt), reprint has been authorized. Reprint authorization and media business cooperation: Amy (wechat: 13701559246);
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